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9 Tips for Living with an Alcoholic that has Alzheimer’s or Dementia

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Although recent research suggests that moderate alcohol intake helps prevent Alzheimer’s disease, much of the research is inconclusive. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, it is difficult to tell because the symptoms of alcohol induced dementia are similar to those of Alzheimer’s. The name of the disorder may be different but they are both very difficult to deal with. Despite this difficulty, there are some things that you can do to make things a bit easier.

1. Talk to the Doctors

Having open and honest discussions with your doctor is the best way to understand the disorders and make sure the treatment takes both alcoholism and dementia into account. Doctors are the best people to tell you about resources and treatments available for your loved one.

2. Make sure you have Support

By learning coping skills and practicing self-care, you’ll be better equipped to help your loved one.

A good support structure is essential for dealing with both alcoholism and dementia. You can find support groups for both issues in your local community. You can also develop a support network through family and friends.

3. Find Help with Care Giving

No one can care for a person 24 hours a day. It is impossible. There are a variety of agencies visit you home and provide respite care for you and your loved one. This helps to prevent burn out and keeps you healthy.

4. Learn Good Coping Mechanisms

Coping mechanisms are an essential part of dealing with dementia and alcoholism. It is important to your health to develop good coping skills. Many communities have classes on caring for elderly patients with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and alcoholism that cover learning and developing coping mechanisms.

5. Deal with the Changes as they Come

No one can anticipate all of the changes that happen when someone has one of the brain disorders associated with age and alcoholism. It is important to take things one change at a time and deal with them as they come.

6. Take Care of Yourself

As the saying goes you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of anyone else. You need a good diet, exercise, and plenty of rest in order to help your loved one.

7. Keep your Loved one Engaged

As with any of the brain disorders associated with age, it is important to keep them active as long as they can be. Research shows that an active brain doesn’t succumb to dementia’s effects nearly as quickly as an inactive one.

8. Understand that they Might Revert to Trying to Drink

Even though they quit years earlier, it is important to remember that an alcoholic with a regressive brain disorder may revert to earlier behaviors. These behaviors include drinking.

9. Know that you are Not Alone

When dealing with alcoholism, Alzheimer’s, or dementia, it is important to remember that you are not alone. We can help you find the treatment that you need for your loved one to live the best life that they can. Call 800-654-0987; we can help you look into the different treatment options that are available.