The Whitworths of Arizona, bringing science to you in everyday language.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Dealing with the Isolation

We know a lot of you are dealing with how to care for a loved one at home with little outside connections.

  • Do keep up with your friends and support people by phone. Consider a phone tree, where each of you is responsible for calling someone in your group and reminding that person to call whoever they are responsible to call.
  • Do use viewing programs like Skype, FaceTime or Zoom to connect with friends and groups.
  • Do learn to order online and have your supplies delivered. Deliveries are often free right now.
  • Do stay safe, and abide by all the safety measures they are asking us to use--hand washing, etc.

We know others of you are dealing with having a loved one in a care facility that you aren't able to visit.

  • Some care partners say they have found that they can work with staff to have their loved ones at a window so they can wave and at least see you for a while.
  • Some care partners are choosing to move into the facility and sleep on a lounge chair next to their loved one's bed. Care facilities may allow this, especially if it makes less work for them. But you will have to abide by their rules and you won't be able to go in and out as you normally would.
  • Make daily telephone calls if your loved one can still use a phone. 
  • Staff may be able to help you set up Zoom or FaceTime meetings but they are awfully busy right now.
  • Give staff extra kudos...bake them cookies, send them cards, let them know how much you appreciate them. A staff that feels appreciated will treat your loved one better--it's just human nature!

These suggestions aren't anywhere near the whole answer and they may not even help you at all. If you have found something that does, be sure to write a comment here and I will publish it. Be aware that I don't publish anything commercial or anything with a website link in the comment.

In the meantime, stay safe.

For more information about Lewy body disorders, read our books:
A Caregivers’ Guide to Lewy Body Dementia
Managing Cognitive Issues in Parkinson's and Lewy Body Dementia
Responsive Dementia Care: Fewer Behaviors Fewer Drugs
Lewy Body Dementia: A Manual for Staff

Helen and James Whitworth are not doctors, lawyers or social workers. As informed caregivers, they share the information here for educational purposes only. It should never be used instead of a professional's advice.

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