How Dementia Care Counseling Can Help You As A Caregiver For Your Spouse

When your spouse is diagnosed with dementia, you'll both face difficult times ahead. Counseling could be beneficial for your spouse in the early stages of dementia, and it would be helpful for you throughout the entire journey as a caregiver. Here are some ways dementia care counseling can help you.

Prepare You For What's To Come

In order to provide your spouse with the best care, you should face the diagnosis head-on so you can make the best decisions for your spouse when they no longer can. It's common to go into denial and not deal with the reality of how much your spouse's life and yours will change. A counselor can help you manage your expectations so you are realistic and so you can help your spouse emotionally and physically as well. You may be taught ways to communicate with your spouse and daily actions you can take to make your spouse's life more bearable and meaningful even when living with dementia. Your spouse will rely on you more and more, and it's tough to be strong, but the well-being of your spouse will depend on you making the best decisions once the mental and physical decline has become advanced.

Connect You With Community Resources

There are many practical matters you have to deal with when your spouse has dementia. It's best to take care of legal issues while your spouse is still able to make decisions and sign documents. You want to make sure you have power over all your finances and that you're able to make medical, legal, and financial decisions when your spouse can no longer do so. You may also want to know about community resources such as home care, respite care, and hospice so you don't have to feel overwhelmed and all alone as a sole caregiver. A counselor may connect you with a point person or organization that can help you with your needs as they develop.

Help You Handle Your Emotions

Caregiving is an emotionally trying and exhausting experience, especially when you care for someone with dementia. It is heartbreaking to see your beloved spouse decline, but it's also frustrating when they're confused and do things like tear up the house or become violent. Plus, dementia decline can be drawn out over many years and take a heavy toll on your emotional and physical health. Counseling can help you during these times by helping you deal with the daily grief of watching your loved one deteriorate and deal with the shame of getting angry when they do things that upset you.

You need someone to confide in regularly, and your family may not be a good choice. You may want your kids and other relatives to think you're holding up fine so you don't add to their burden of worry over your spouse. A dementia care counselor can help you deal with your emotions during this phase of your life and may also connect you to hotlines so you have someone you can call any hour of the day or night when your emotions are overcome.

Contact an organization like Better Brains Rehabilitation for more information.