Unfortunately this is something that most carers, myself included, ignore to crisis point.
Even if we don’t like to admit it to ourselves we will all reach a point when caring for someone, be it our spouse or parent who is suffering from Alzheimer’s, we can no longer manage well alone.
For the early stage there is some In-Home support available through organizations like BlueCare, OZCare or Anglicare to name a few. They will provide you with a few hours day or night so that you can have a break or attend a function you have been looking forward to.
As the disease progresses and the breaks you require to continue caring well will become longer. It can then be hard to find services that will come in for an extended period of time. Particularly, in the case of a Alzheimer’s sufferer, where continuity and routine are so important to reduce potential distress. One organization that can support you at this time is Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centres.
Commonwealth Carer Resource Centres provide carers with information and advice about relevant services and entitlements. You can contact your closest Commonwealth Carer Resource Centre on 1800 242 636.
BUT inevitably you will be faced with the realization that you can no longer manage to offer the best care and your loved one should go into permanent care.
I myself had to make this decision several years ago. This scenario is not mine because of a great difference in our ages. Unfortunately in our everyday work at Home Care 2U we come across this scenario on a regular basis. It is heartbreaking for both the Families and Workers involved.
Imagine the distressing situation of a husband or wife, where they can no longer care well for their Spouse and one has to be admitted into permanent care.
Everyone understands that a couple that have been married for over 40 years don’t want to be separated in their old age, no matter what the circumstances. However, the unfortunate reality is that if your loved one has dementia it is inevitable that they will require special care sooner or later.
Most couples finally face the reality of admittance of the one party who will be well cared for but the additional burden of travel, visiting hours, loss of contact, loss of purpose and many associated caused for distress, anxiety and grief for the partner/carer left behind.
There is a solution.
I won’t kid around, it takes COURAGE and it does mean leaving the much loved family home but the couple will not ever be that far apart that they cannot spend every day together if they wish. Planning ahead is a great way to avoid or at least reduce a lot of heartache!
Continuing Care Retirement Communities – CLICK HERE to find out more