Many people receive a diagnosis earlier now than it seems they used to, but how they and their family or support group react to the news makes a world of difference in the rest of their lives and livelihood. This is an important topic for anyone who may find themselves in this position since the World Health Organization estimates nearly 10 million new cases worldwide each year. In the U.S. there are 5.8 cases of Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related cases right now, with 5.6 million of those being 65 years of age and older and 200,000 younger individuals.
With these numbers in mind, we need to look for ways to make life manageable and make certain individuals know what to expect as they move on to be able to live their lives in the most productive way possible. Looking forward toward life rather than backward with regret may be the answer, and here at Heritage Hills, our affordable memory care in Oceanside can show you a way to do just that!
Let’s look at some steps of what you can expect and should do to look in a forward direction that can make you feel more comfortable as you continue living your life rather than dreading it:
1.) Learn More About Your Diagnosis
While it is scary to have a diagnosis like this, finding out more about what is expected can help you deal with what may be coming. Getting accurate information rather than dreading the future based on assumptions is key to your mental health in combating the disease emotionally. While your first contact is your doctor who provided the diagnosis, there are also numerous legitimate and informational resources available willing to provide you with information that could help you as you are becoming familiar with the diagnosis. Some of these are;
- Alzheimer’s and related Dementias Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center:
- Alzheimer’s Association:
- Alzheimer’s Foundation of America:
In addition there are often local Alzheimer and dementia-related organizations that provide information and support to patients and their families. Look up these local groups to help you as you prepare for the future.
2.) Regular Medical Care
Even though you may be feeling quite healthy in spite of a few noticeable changes in memory or other issues, you should take advantage of regular medical checkups now. The importance of this cannot be stressed enough. It is now that you can fully explain your wishes and understand all the doctors and other caregivers explain about future options, and it is now you may want to make decisions regarding later in your life. This is your best avenue for having the most control yourself.
You have likely already visited with your primary care doctor if you know this diagnosis, but you may want to consider seeing a neurologist, neuropsychiatrist, or geriatric psychiatrist to help you cope with what is to come and help figure out options and timing. It is often better to be proactive in developments that may later appear and cause you issues. In addition, this could be a good time to visit with a memory care specialist or memory disorders clinic to find out how soon you may want to decide about living alternatives like a senior living community with respite care service available. Many of these may be like Heritage Hills with affordable memory care in Oceanside that enhances your lifestyle making your life enjoyable. Making decisions early will ensure you are able to find space at a location you are most interested in living.
3.) Day-to-Day Tasks
The first major frustration that most individuals find when hit with any form of dementia comes with their daily lives and the tasks that suddenly become more difficult. Once this begins to happen, find ways to make these tasks more manageable before you reach the point of becoming so frustrated you want to give up.
Some ideas for this are:
- Set reminders on your phone for taking medication, appointments, and maybe even meals, watering plants, etc.
- Use a notepad or sticky notes to jot down reminders and post them where you will easily see them, a pillbox to keep medications organized, and a calendar to record appointments or other important dates.
- Ask friends or family members or find local services to help with needs like cleaning, cooking, rides to appointments, or other tasks like these that become a frustration. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help from others.
The key to success is to be proactive so you do not reach major frustration and, instead, handle the daily needs in your life with as much ease as possible.
4.) Decide Your Best Living Arrangements
One of the most important elements you can do for yourself and your loved ones is to think ahead about your living arrangements. It is never easy to leave a home you love, and you may not be ready to do that immediately. While living at home, you may want to be certain you have diligently checked your surroundings to ensure safety in the home. Once memory begins to be affected, there are areas that may need to be altered.
In addition, it is often suggested that patients wear bracelets with identification and contact information included, just in case you become lost when you leave home. None of this is comfortable to consider, and sometimes it may lead you to wanting to think about that next step–what about an assisted-care facility. There’s no reason to wait until you are too far along!
Heritage Hills offers an affordable memory care oceanside that can offer you an enjoyable lifestyle. With different options for your living arrangements, a calming spa, therapy garden and more, there are many amenities that make this senior living community one that can meet your lifestyle needs even as they change.
Affordable Memory Care in Oceanside
We know a diagnosis of dementia for you or a loved one can be scary, but we are here to help. If you would like to reach out to us at Heritage Hills to discuss living options, ideas about how we can help your transition into a positive and healthy lifestyle that provides you with both safety and a beautifully designed setting that is perfect to meet all your needs, please reach out to us for a tour or discussion about how we can help. Heritage Hills is the exceptional senior living community that could be just right for you!