Caregiving: Why Is Routine Important?

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Home care provider with a smiling patient in Knoxville, TN

Caregivers Make Routine a Priority

Predictable routines are typically best for everyone, but older adults thrive on a daily habit. Regular schedules help remind older adults of what’s next in the day, bringing a sense of security to them. Dementia sufferers especially need the structure and routine from a caregiver.

Structured Routines Provide Feelings of Wellbeing

Structured routines for meal and bath times provide feelings of well-being for most aging adults. Just like the rest of the population, older adults sleep better with unchanging sleep and wake up times, too.

People struggling with dementia and cognitive issues are less confused when they have structured lives. Someone might forget what they did earlier in the day, but he or she will still have a sense of what’s ahead in their scheduled day. Regular dining times prevent hunger and anxious feelings, reducing stress in dementia patients, who could otherwise have behavioral challenges.

A regular schedule means less planning for the caregiver, too, so there’s more time spent in the moment with the person being cared for.

Plan Out a Routine

Plan a routine considering the older adult’s preferences 

As the caregiver, plan a routine considering what the older adult prefers to do. Keep mealtimes, daily care and activities at the best functional time for the aging adult. Don’t change up the older adult’s routine if he or she is happy with it. If waking up early for coffee has been the routine, keep it consistent.

Flexibility in the routine

Keeping a routine is important, however, some flexibility will be required for those occasional days the aging adult doesn’t feel well and needs rest. Then, an unscheduled activity on a good day will be great.

Keep variety with activities, too 

Schedule events and activities for the week ahead, but create variety with different types of exercise and cognitive games or challenges. The caregiver must remember spiritual nourishment and change up the social events, too.

Keep everything in its original place

Only rearrange the aging adult’s personal belongings for safety reasons or confusion and frustration can follow. Keep everything in its original place as much as possible.

As the main caregiver, could you benefit from some assistance with your loved one? Home Care Assistance can help as little or as much as necessary. Call us at (865) 229-4981 for more information today!

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