Safety for Those With Alzheimer's

 

There are many underlying hazards for individuals with Alzheimer's that most people wouldn't recognize right away. Safety is a concern for any caregiver but those caring for family members with Alzheimer's or dementia have an added responsibility to ensure that the home environment is not only safe, but secure. Safety issues also include wandering and driving. The Alzheimer's Association wants to help you understand the hazards.

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Booklet
The National Institute on Aging offers a booklet called "Home Safety for People With Alzheimer's Disease". The goal of the booklet is to "improve home safety by identifying potential problems in the home and offering possible solutions to help prevent accidents". They provide an extensive checklist of potential hazards along with remedies/solutions.

 

The Alzheimer's Association has a program called MedicAlert + Safe Return (1-800-625-3780) that offers a low-cost identity tag and registration in a national database. It's purpose is to help locate memory impaired individuals who have become disoriented and/or lost and provide critical medical information. Since it may be difficult to convince the person with Alzheimer's to wear tag, the Association offers tips on this subject.

The Association also offers "Caregiver Jewelry" that will identify you as a caregiver to someone with Alzheimer's if you should get in an accident. That way, authorities would know to address the safety and care issue for your family member should you be unable to make those arrangements.

Medic Alert + Safe Return Tag

 

One concern related to safety for those with Alzheimer's is wandering. With today's technology, caregivers can benefit from the advances in Global Positioning Devices (GPS).  Check online for resources.

MedicAlert bracelets that have been used for years. Now, detailed health histories are stored on a keychain size Med-InfoChip USB drive that uses its own database. When plugged into a computer, the patient or family member can input pertinent medical data. Information on doctors, family history, family and emergency contacts, allergies, medications and insurance coverage are some of the types of information that may be stored. Digital copies of x-rays and EKG reports may also be stored. Medical workers can easily see the files by plugging the drive into a computer. The Med-InfoChip has various megabytes of memory depending on cost, with ranges from $70-$100.

 

Other Information

Ageless Design
offering products designed to help you work with the unique challenges of living with or caring for someone with Alzheimer's and the impact of the home environment.
(10/2008)

 

Puzzle With Missing Pieces

 

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