Four Things You Shouldn’t Say to a Parent With Alzheimer’s

Your mom has Alzheimer’s, and your family agreed that taking care of her is a priority. You’re the one with ample free time during the week, so you’re the one who is with her the most. 


Recently, you’ve been finding communication to be increasingly difficult. It doesn’t seem that you and your mom can connect at any point, and she’s frustrated with you, which impacts how well you can help her. Are you saying one of the four things you should never say to someone with Alzheimer’s?


Stop Asking Me Questions

Elder Care Alexandria, MN: Seniors and Alzheimer's

Elder Care Alexandria, MN: Seniors and Alzheimer’s


Your mom needs reassurance, and one thing that will help her feel comforted and safe is to ask you questions. Keep answering them. Don’t get impatient. Never tell her to stop or tell her she just asked that question and you already answered it.


You Already Told Me That


She’s going to say the same things over and over. Let her. Don’t tell her she’s already told you that. Your mom doesn’t remember and she doesn’t want to think about her memory getting worse. Let her repeat something as much as she wants to. Eventually, she’ll find something else to do.


Let Me Do It, It’s Taking You Too Long


It will take your mom a lot longer to perform simple tasks. She used to get showered and dressed in 30 minutes. Now, she showers, forgets she showered, and takes another shower. She brushes her teeth and forgets what she’s doing halfway through, so she brushes them again and again.


Don’t tell her to stop and that you’ll do it. It will upset her. Instead, give her something to do that’s out of your way. You could let her fold the clean laundry while you vacuum and dust. She’ll feel useful, and it’s something that keeps her occupied while you complete other tasks.


That Person Died Years Ago


As memory diminishes, your mom is unlikely to remember that certain people passed away. She may ask repeatedly for her parents. Instead of reminding her again and again that they died, make up an excuse. Say they’re away on vacation and will be back in a few days. If you tell her they died, she’ll go through the grieving process over and over, which is emotionally draining for everyone.


When you find yourself feeling drained, frustrated, or burned out as a family caregiver, take a break. It’s okay to admit that it’s just too much sometimes. Everyone experiences those moments when they have a parent with Alzheimer’s. 


What you should do is recognize the importance of taking care of yourself first. Arrange elder care services and take a day off. Go to the beach, stay at home and catch up on sleep, or visit friends. With an elder care aide helping out, you’ll be able to recharge knowing your mom is in great hands.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering Elder Care in Alexandria, MN please contact the caring staff at Alternative Senior Care today. Providing Home Care in Central Minnesota and Surrounding Communities. Call us Today (320) 352-3350

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Lainie Berg