Advice from the Alzheimer’s Foundation on adapting routines

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NEW YORK, N.Y. (WCBD) – Everyone’s lives are being disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, but for those with Alzheimer’s, the disruptions are magnified.

According to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA), “changes in daily routines can lead to anxiety, confusion, agistation, and/or discomfort.”

Caregivers for those with Alzheimer’s can take steps to mitigate the negative impacts of the changes.

First and foremost, caregivers should offer extra support during this time. Additionally, surrounding the person with familiar items such as music, food, and clothing can be calming as well.

Creating a daily schedule with visual cues can be helpful at any time, but especially during times of change.

The AFA recommends maintaining as much of a normal schedule as possible: get up, eat meals, and go to bed at regular times.

To maintain even more regularity, “bring outside destinations in.” For example, if a person eats at a certain restaurant frequently, order takeout from that restaurant.

Staying active is important as well. To help, the AFA is offering virtual exercise programs on their Facebook page.

Finally, staying connected is vital. The AFA recommends using “FaceTime, phone calls, and text messages to keep the person connected with family and friends.”

The AFA also has a Helpline open 24/7: (866) 232-8484.

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