If dementia caregivers are not being realistic about the care needs and functioning of their loved ones, chances are that something could go very wrong. These are a number of dangers that should help you focus on maintaining a realistic outlook.
Too Much Medication
By ignoring that our loved one has dementia or Alzheimer’s, it can lead to bigger problems – including overdosing on medication. If you need to start dispersing medication yourself, but allow someone living with dementia to do it themselves instead, it could lead to an accidental overdose.
Problems With The Family
Family conflict is another major issue as far as denial is concerned. You may have certain parts of the family who are in denial about the situation, which leads to them forcing those who are aware of the situation to take on multiple burdens. If someone is in denial, it could lead to them reasoning that additional care is not needed.
It Delays Professional Help
Oftentimes we see that people do not want others to know that their loved one is struggling with memory-related disease. They start to withdraw from the outside world, but problems are eventually going to become overwhelming. Having to care for a loved one all by yourself can be emotionally, mentally, and physically draining. By delaying professional help this way, you are constantly playing catch up with ‘what might have been done’.
Not Getting Affairs In Order
People may not want to face facts, but denial can lead to problems with legal papers not being in order when the person living with dementia is no longer able to care for him/herself. These include advance health directive and the financial power of attorney. If it is too late, you have to go to court to get legal rights. This is not only expensive, but is also going to waste valuable time.
Health Decline In The Caregiver
As previously mentioned, caregiving with someone who lives with dementia is a stressful job – especially if you are in denial about what is going on. In fact, when compared to non-caregivers, family caregivers over the age of 66 have a 63 percent higher mortality rate. For all the reasons that it might not make sense for the patient to be in denial, it is important for all parties to face reality.
While we understand that this is a particularly uncomfortable situation for most people to talk about, it is important to understand that denial does not do anyone any good. If you have questions about possible living arrangement or want a professional opinion, we recommend contacting us at www.carltonseniorliving.com.