Your dad has Alzheimer’s disease. As the year’s pass, his fidgeting is getting worse. Fidgeting is a common symptom as people with Alzheimer’s move to the middle and late stages of the disease. It’s often linked to agitation and anxiety. It can be alarming if your dad’s fidgeting involves him pulling or picking at his hands until he develops sores.
As sores can develop an infection, it’s best to find ways to focus your dad’s fidgeting on an object rather than himself. Here are some of the best gadgets for easing the desire to fidget.
#1 – A Fidget Blanket
A fidget blanket is a blanket that has items like zippers, buckles, stretchy bands, laces, snaps, and buttons to manipulate. You can make your own or buy a fidget blanket online. If your dad likes textures, aim for a blanket that has different materials for him to touch. He may be more technically minded, in which case a fidget blanket with lots of things to manipulate is important.
#2 – A Rubik’s Cube
If your dad isn’t likely to take a Rubik’s Cube apart, twisting it may help soothe his need to fidget with items. The only thing to watch is that if he does take it apart and is likely to put smaller pieces in his mouth, the small cubes can pose a choking hazard.
#3 – A Plush Robotic Cat or Dog
Many adults with Alzheimer’s find a robotic cat or dog to be soothing. The plush stuffed animal is mechanical and makes realistic movements like wagging or swishing a tail, moving the head and eyes, and reaching up a paw. They also bark or purr. The fur is realistic, so your dad may find himself petting the animal for hours, which stops him from picking at his skin.
#4 – A Sensory Board
Sensory boards are wooden boards with devices he can fidget with. They may have zippers, dials, deadbolts, and joysticks to manipulate. If you’re handy, you could take a board, sand the surfaces and edges, and add devices like light switches, dials, deadbolts, hooks, and latches.
Make Sure You Have a Strong Support Team
You need support, too. Trying to manage your dad’s care on your own will cause stress and lead to caregiver burnout. Make sure you have a strong support team, whether online or at a local chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. The services from a personal care at home agency are also helpful.
No one goes into caring for a parent knowing precisely what will happen as Alzheimer’s disease progresses. It’s stressful at times, but it can also bring joy. Make sure you’re taking the breaks you need to unwind and de-stress. One way to do this is by hiring personal care at home aides to provide respite care.
Instead of spending all day and night with your dad, you get to go out with friends, take a walk, or get some sleep. A caregiver spends time with your parent while you’re focusing on yourself. Call a personal care at home agency to make arrangements for respite care.
If you are considering personal care at home in Cinco Ranch, TX, for an aging loved one, please call the caring staff at At Your Side Home Care. We will answer all of your senior care questions. Call today: (832) 271-1600.
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