Skip to content

    Alzheimer's Disease Health Center

    Select An Article

    Tips for Easier Personal Care With Alzheimer’s

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    If your loved one has Alzheimer’s, he might need help taking care of himself every day, including assistance with eating, bathing, shaving, and using the toilet.

    It’s best to encourage him to handle these things on his own for as long as he can. But when you need to step in, there are ways to make it easier for both of you.

    Recommended Related to Alzheimer's

    How to Help Your Aging Parents Without Going Broke

    By Kate AshfordFrom making their daily life easier to affording in-home care, here's the (money) wise guide you need When Sue Dietz noticed her mother's dementia worsening, she began spending every day at her parents' house near Pittsburgh — making sure her mom was eating properly and taking medications. But the schedule became too much when Dietz's daughter in North Carolina had a baby. "It wasn't fair to my daughter that I couldn't be with her when she needed me, too," says Dietz, 56. Although...

    Read the How to Help Your Aging Parents Without Going Broke article > >

    General Tips

    • Set up a daily routine and stick to it. For example, brush your loved one's teeth after meals. Or always have baths in the mornings or evenings. Choose the most relaxed times of the day for these tasks.
    • Respect her privacy. Close doors and blinds. Cover her with a towel or bathrobe.
    • Encourage her to take on as much of her own care as possible. This will give her a sense of independence and accomplishment.
    • Keep her abilities in mind. Give her enough time to complete each task -- for example, brushing her hair or teeth.
    • Encourage and support her. For example, say, "You did a nice job getting dressed today."
    • Tell her what you’re doing before you do it -- "I'm going to wash your hair now."
    • If she can dress herself, lay out her clothes in the order she should put them on. It’s best to give her clothing that’s easy to put on, with few buttons.

    Eating Well

    Healthy eating is very important for people with Alzheimer’s, but it can get harder as their symptoms get worse. Here are some ways to make sure your loved one gets a nutritious diet and plenty of fluids, like water or juice.

    • Encourage her to feed herself if she’s able. Serve finger foods that are easier to handle and eat, like chicken nuggets, orange slices, or steamed broccoli.
    • If eating with a plate and fork gets too hard for her, give her a bowl and spoon. You can also try plate guards or silverware with handles.
    • Don't force her to eat. If she’s not interested in food, try to find out why. Treat her like an adult, not a child.
    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    Remember your finger
    When it’s more than just forgetfulness.
    senior man with serious expression
    Which kinds are treatable?
     
    senior man
    Common symptoms to look for.
    mri scan of human brain
    Can drinking red wine reverse the disease?
     
    Checklist
    ARTICLE
    eating blueberries
    ARTICLE
     
    clock
    Article
    Colored mri of brain
    ARTICLE
     
    Human brain graphic
    ARTICLE
    mature woman
    ARTICLE
     
    Woman comforting ailing mother
    ARTICLE
    Senior woman with serious expression
    ARTICLE