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Staying Aware of Your Surroundings as an Alzheimer’s Caregiver

On a morning in May, 2017, a middle-aged woman got up extra early, as she had been doing for months already, made lunch for her children, saw them off to school, and then rushed over to her elderly mother’s house to look in on her. She was a family caregiver and her mother had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s for quite some time.

Alzheimer's Care in West Hempstead NY: Being Aware of Your Surroundings

Alzheimer’s Care in West Hempstead NY: Being Aware of Your Surroundings

This woman didn’t know the first thing about Alzheimer’s aside from what her mother’s doctor had told her initially, but she was learning as she went along. She was working a full-time job, raising her own children, and trying to juggle so many things that she didn’t pay much attention to the local news, weather, or other issues going on around her.

It didn’t seem to matter.

On this morning, though, severe storms were rolling in.

She knew the weather was volatile lately. There was excessive humidity, thunderstorms every so often, and the heat kept ratcheting up. When she got to her mother’s house, she was completely caught off guard when the severe thunderstorms rolled in.

Her mother suddenly became terrified.

This was something this caregiver had not expected. Her mother always seemed calm and rational, even during the most extreme circumstances and severe weather. It took every ounce of her strength, emotional and physical, to keep her mother from completely ‘losing it,’ as she told her husband later that evening.

It reached a point of escalation and she yelled at her mother.

She got so upset and frustrated that she scolded her mother. This did not go over well and created an even more challenging situation.

For people like this individual, taking care of a loved one with Alzheimer’s is certainly a wonderful thing to do, but there could be many unexpected circumstances that arise that make it extremely difficult to not just provide proper care, but also to help them stay safe.

When this woman was dealing with an intense thunderstorm and all of the other situations going on around her, she was in an unsafe situation. It also wasn’t safe for her mother during this storm.

It’s important to not just learn about the various signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s, but to also be aware of one’s surroundings and even what may be expected throughout the day, including the weather. This woman was lucky as neither she nor her mother were injured, and she certainly learned a valuable lesson, but for anyone who is a caregiver for a loved one diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, they need to be diligent and pay attention to their surroundings because things can change almost by the minute.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Alzheimer’s care in West Hempstead, NY, please contact the caring staff at Family First Home Companions. Serving all of Long Island. Call today: (631) 319-3961

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Jennifer Benjamin

Jennifer Benjamin has a Masters degree in Business Administration, a graduate Certificate in Geriatric Care Management, is a Certified Dementia Practitioner and is co-founder of Family First Home Companions. With a background in human resources and business management she helped to build a company that is founded on professionalism, integrity, compassion and know-how.

Jennifer has specialized training in Alzheimer's disease through the Long Island Alzheimer's Association and the Long Island Alzheimer's Foundation. She also volunteered her time with the Alzheimer's Disease Assistance Center of Long Island for 3 years by providing congnitive stimulations to an Alzheimer's patient group.

Jennifer educates the community about elder care and speaks to caregiver support groups, senior centers, and at professional organizations. Topics include home safety, effective strategies for family caregiving, elder care planning, and awareness about elder abuse.

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