I also live with her.

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#1... PLEASE take care of yourself..
#2 dont be afraid to ask for outside help. Contact your local office of aging and adult services..

Do you have POA? power-of-attorney. what about her meds? do you have a home health aide? what is her current health status(as in is her diabetes in control)? both your financial status'.

Yes alot of questions shot at you at once, but you dont need to answer these questions. just ask them of yourself and keep it all in mind when finding resources to help you.

So to advice lol... i would read up on foods that are good and bad for a diabetic. definitely read up on dementia and all its "issues" its different for everyone depending on their stages. But keep an eye on your grandmothers habits, etc. There might be times where she gets confused and mistakes one thing for another. So its good to watch so you can take away the temptation for the bad habits. Remember, in almost all cases of dementia, the effected reverts back to childhood. It would be a good idea to see the range of what your grandmother is capable of. Try puzzles etc. Things to keep her occupied, that she would enjoy.

Dementia is a roller coaster ride. When you have good days, theyre great and when theyre bad.. theyre hell.. you have to remember(and its easier said than done, believe me) not to take anything personal. You are dealing with a mature person who has been independent for a loooong time. Giving up some of that control or having those feelings of loss will create huge emotional turmoil and sometimes, sad to say, they take it out on the people closest to them.

Remember to deal with one crisis at a time. Dont take everything on all at once. You wont get anything done that way. Rest whenever you can. Dementia patients are famous for telling you its time for 10am sunday church, when it's 2am Thursday morning lol

You probably already notice that she repeats herself. Dont get frustrated. Extend it.. ask questions.."wow gran! and what did grandpa do?".. redirect her attention.. theres going to be alot of times that you have absolutely NO clue what shes talking about.. Dementia patients sometimes come up with some WILD stories.. just listen.. dont panic.. reassure if its an alarming story to her.. sometimes, some stories you just got to roll with..

Remember to keep your humor. No, it's not funny what you or she is going through. But as Reader Digest says... Laughter in Medicine.

Last thing that might help you.. remember the Six Principals of Care..

Communication...shes ill, not stupid
Independence...let her do as much as she can so that she feels she still has some control on her own life..
Infection Control...

Best of Luck, Big Ed... keep in touch with us!! We're always here!!
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