Tips for Caregivers


Millions of people living in Canada take care of a friend or family member with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. Sometimes caregivers live with the person or nearby, other times they live far away.

Bluewater Clinical Research Group

Dr. Michael Roman


For many families, caring for a person with dementia isn’t just one person’s job, but the role of many people who share tasks and responsibilities. No matter what kind of caregiver you are, taking care of another person can be overwhelming at times.

In the early stages of Alzheimer’s and related dementias, individuals often encounter changes in cognitive functions that impact their daily lives and activities. As the diseases progress, individuals typically require more assistance with basic daily tasks like bathing, grooming, and dressing. Such dependence on assistance can be distressing for the individual affected. Here are some strategies to facilitate caregiving:


•             Establish a consistent routine for activities such as bathing, dressing, and meals.

•             Aid the individual in maintaining organized to-do lists, appointments, and events in a notebook or calendar.

•             Implement reminder systems to assist with medication management.

•             Encourage independence during dressing and bathing activities whenever possible.

•             Select clothing that is comfortable and easy to use, such as items with elastic waistbands or large zipper pulls.

•             Ensure safety during bathing by using a sturdy shower chair to support unsteady individuals and prevent falls.

•             Approach caregiving tasks with gentleness and respect, providing clear communication about each step involved.

•             Offer meals in a familiar setting and allow ample time for the individual to eat without feeling rushed.


By implementing these strategies, caregivers can enhance the quality of care provided to their loved ones while promoting a sense of comfort and familiarity in their daily routines.