Your mom has Alzheimer’s disease, and she won’t stop following you around. If you go downstairs to do the laundry, she follows you. You have to stop what you’re doing to safely help her get down the stairs. It’s frustrating, and you don’t understand why she’s following you. Having some relief from 24-hour home care service can make it less stressful for you.
Shadowing Is a Common Symptom
Shadowing is a common symptom of Alzheimer’s disease, and it often coincides with sundowning. Your mom follows you around the house, never leaving you alone. As she follows you, she may bombard you with questions like, “Where am I?” or statements like, “I want to go home.”
Experts believe shadowing is mainly a way for the person to feel more comfortable. As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, your mom can’t remember where she is and even who you are. It’s alarming, and shadowing you is her only connection to supportive care that eases the feelings of being completely alone.
How Can You Make Your Mom Feel Safe?
When shadowing is present, there are things you can do to help your mom feel safer and more connected. Play music that she’d remember. If you know, she remembers her early-20s more, choose music from that decade. If she talks a lot about her teen years, aim for those memories.
Repeatedly connect with her and reassure her that she’s safe and with you or another trusted caregiver. Tell her often that you’re not going to leave her alone. If you need to go out, you’ll make sure she has another family member or friend with her.
When you go out or go to another room, tell your mom you’re going and set a timer that she can rely on. Make sure she knows that when the timer rings, you’ll come back. It’s going to be a better way for her to track time than simply telling her you’ll be back in a few minutes.
Does she have a favorite song? Consider recording a version of yourself singing it. Have her sing with you. You could save those songs and keep them for yourself. Eventually, you’ll be able to play them back and remember the fun you had together.
Involve your mom in the chores you do. It helps to give her purpose. If you’re vacuuming the carpets, she could follow with a dust rag and wipe down furnishings. You’re doing the laundry today, so let your mom help you fold the clean and dry clothing and linens.
Hire 24-Hour Home Care to Ensure You Get Breaks
Shadowing is very common in the middle stages of Alzheimer’s. It’s also hard to get things done when your mom follows you around all day. With 24-hour home care services, you have a break. Let caregivers help your mom all day and night to take care of yourself.
Use 24-hour home care aides to ensure you get enough sleep, have time to socialize, and can run errands without interruption. Call to learn more.