Making Care Decisions for a Loved One with Dementia

October 5, 2018   /   byHealthier Societies  / Categories :  Medical
Elderly woman with her nurse

If you have a loved one with a progressive disease like dementia, it’s important to provide care and support that can somehow improve their quality of life. The use of medication is an essential part of this, especially in treating symptoms and managing pain.

The sad part is the use of such medications might not make a substantial difference in the later stages of the disease. The already poor quality of life that your loved one has can also be further compromised by the drug, especially if it has serious side effects. You should also know that some medications for dementia symptoms can cause nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and diarrhea.

Time for End-of-Life Care

While most consider dementia as an illness of an aging mind, hospice care centers in Indiana note that it’s a terminal disease. This only makes it important to carefully decide on end-of-life care before cognitive abilities decline and your loved one can no longer make important decisions. Hospice and palliative care can be beneficial for both the patient and the family.

Making Decisions about Care

As dementia progresses, you might also find it hard to provide ample care and support for a loved one who can no longer voice out their concerns or communicate clearly. The responsibility of making care decisions will then fall on you and other family members. If you end up in such situations, be sure to consider the goals of care, as well as the risks and side effects of the treatment.

Assistance from Experts

People with dementia are likely to experience symptoms and physical changes that can greatly lower their quality of life. Hospice and palliative care experts can offer support and assistance at this difficult time, especially in controlling symptoms, relieving pain, improving quality of life, as well as reducing anxiety for both patients and families.

If your loved one did not express the type of care he or she prefers, making decisions about end-of-life care can be complicated. If you’re in the same situation, it’s best to get help from healthcare providers, while also considering the values of your loved one.

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