The elderly patriarch of the family was a pillar of strength for not only his family, but also his community and church. He was kind, considerate, and always available if someone needed help. His outgoing nature and sense of humor hid the exhibition of the early signs of Alzheimer’s and his family’s and friend’s realization of those signs.
He would venture out daily in his car to run some errands or to just cruise the neighborhood. Since he was retired, these daily exclusions didn’t cause alarm to his family. With the passing of time, his …
family became more concerned when he would return home, but couldn’t remember where he had been or what route he had taken. The family conversation naturally turned to the topic of confiscating his car keys, but this decision was met with great opposition by the elderly gentleman. Thus, the family came up with the idea of disconnecting the car’s distributor cap which rendered the car inoperable. I recall seeing a similar tactic used in the movie ‘The Sound of Music’. Needless to say, the driving problem was solved with respect and without the expected drama of an argument.
It can be difficult to make a decision for a loved one when they do not agree with this decision, even if it is in their best interest. Would you know what signs indicate it’s time to start the conversations of helping a loved one? According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the following are the top 10 signs for early detection:
- Memory loss that disrupts daily life
- Challenges in planning or solving problems
- Difficulty completing familiar tasks
- Confusion with time or place
- Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
- New problems with words in speaking or writing
- Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
- Decreased or poor judgment
- Withdrawal from work or social activities
- Changes in mood and personality
Many people wait until a crisis or family confrontation occurs before discussing what they want to happen when they or a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or other debilitating disease. It is important to have a plan in place. Our mission at Strategic Hourglass Solutions is to educate others on the importance of Legacy Planning by starting the conversations on topics such as moving, downsizing, disability and death. Our Information for My Caregiver guide catalogues your personal, medical, and legal information thereby easing your and your caregiver’s stress. This guide will be available soon as a download fillable pdf version on our Purchase a Planner page.