Addressing Unfair Judgment and Some Misconceptions About Caregiving

Addressing Unfair Judgment and Some Misconceptions About Caregiving
It’s easy to pass judgment on others about what they may be doing wrong. Unfortunately, because of this, caregivers are often the targets of unfair scrutiny. Alzheimer’s caregivers are frequently the subjects of pointing fingers, and folks looking on from the cheap seats are quite opinionated. Here’s the thing: Life looks different from a distance, and it's unlike the microscopic view that caregivers have of their own situations. Many misconceptions about caring exist, and when directed at a caregiver, these mistaken beliefs can cause guilt and unhappiness. It's time to stop the madness. Following are a few suggestions:

Cleanliness

Cleanliness may be next to godliness, but for caregivers, there’s clean — and then there’s clean. Don’t judge a caregiver by the state of a person's clothing, especially following a meal. Caregivers strive to keep their patients and loved ones clean and neat, but they also encourage them to feed themselves if they can. Independence trumps cleanliness — and spills happen. We combat spills with oversized bibs to cover shirts, blouses, and tops and keep a change of clothes nearby. Every now and then, we’re caught out. Please try not to judge.

Unkempt appearances

Caregivers choose their battles, usually in descending order of importance. Showers, brushing teeth, and general bathroom duties are the order of the day. The stages of Alzheimer’s disease often dictate how many of these tasks are completed, which determines the standard of personal grooming. Unruly hair m
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