Becoming a Caregiver to Someone with Dementia

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Becoming a Caregiver to Someone with Dementia

An elderly woman with her adult daughter.

When a parent is diagnosed with dementia, their adult children are often called into caregiving duty. Becoming a caregiver for the first time can be frightening. There’s a lot of worry surrounding the future, whether you’re up for the job, and how you’ll manage to continue working, spend time with your spouse and children, and still have time for yourself.

Caregiver Northridge CA - Becoming a Caregiver to Someone with Dementia .

Caregiver Northridge CA – Becoming a Caregiver to Someone with Dementia .

As you start on the journey of a dementia caregiver, here are some things to consider about being a dementia caregiver.

#1 Think About Whether You’re the Right Person for the Job

Of course you want your parent to have the best care and, because you love them, you’re willing to make sacrifices for their care. However, before you jump into caregiving with both feet, take some time to think about whether you really want to be a caregiver. Sometimes people feel pressured into being caregivers because they happen to live closest to the parent or because they feel like it’s something they are obligated to do.

Becoming a caregiver is a personal decision and there is no shame in admitting to yourself and others that you might not be up for the job or that you simply don’t have as much time to devote to being a caregiver as your parent might need. It’s okay to ask for help from family and friends or to hire a home care provider through an agency to care for your parent. You can still be of great help by simply coordinating care or spending time with your parent as you always have.

#2 Plan for Progression Early

Dementia is progressive, which means that your parent’s symptoms are going to become worse as time goes on. While your parent is in the early stages of dementia, talk with other family members and with your parent to make plans for the future. Discuss where your parent will live and who will be responsible for taking care of them. Though it’s a difficult conversation to have, it’s also a good idea to talk to your parent about their final wishes and funeral planning.

#3 Learn About Support Systems

There are lots of organizations that offer help to people with dementia and their caregivers. Talk to your parent’s doctor and social worker about where you can turn for help. Find out about local chapters of the Alzheimer’s Association where you can attend caregiver workshops and obtain useful resources. Also, contact the local senior center and find out about services they offer.

#4 Plan to Take Care of Yourself

It’s easy to let your own health and well-being fall by the wayside when you’re busy caring for someone else. Plan to take care of yourself by eating healthy, making time to exercise, and finding ways to relax. Getting time for yourself will mean that you have to ask others for help. Talk to family members and friends about spending time with your parent so that you can take time to exercise, go to health appointments, and spend time doing things you enjoy. When you take care of yourself, you’ll feel better and be happier, and that will make you a better caregiver for your parent.


If you or an aging loved one are considering Caregiver Services in Northridge CA, please contact the caring staff at 1Heart Caregiver Services today.

Belina C. Nernberg
Belina C. Nernberg
Belina Calderon-Nernberg is the CEO and founder of a group of successful companies – 1Heart Caregiver Services, LA Jobs Employment Agency Inc. and Summit Medical Billing Solutions, Inc. As the CEO of 1Heart Caregiver Services, one of the fastest growing in-home care service companies in California, Belina has been responsible for the company’s increased productivity and consistent profitability for more than 12 years. Belina provided the vision, leadership, and direction that the company needed to achieve its short-term and long-term goals. As her greatest accomplishment, the company is now equipped with the expertise to expand its business operations to different States in the U.S. Belina brings with her a corporate experience of 23 years, with 13 solid years of experience as CEO of an employment agency and a senior care service company in Southern California. Belina’s principle-centered leadership and strength in her ability to combine corporate talents pave the way for the company to achieve greater heights. Belina has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of St. La Salle, Philippines. In 2013, she was honored with the Los Angeles IMAGE AWARDS – an award given to emerging leaders in business, community service, arts and entertainment. In June 2014, she was also awarded the title of Ambassador of Goodwill by the HiFi (Historic Filipinotown) Neighborhood Council. This title is bestowed to carefully selected Filipino-Americans who are persons of integrity who have the ability “to promote, reach out, influence and mobilize public interest and support of the ideals, values, principles and programs of the Historic Filipinotown.” In December 2015, she was also the recipient of the TOPLA (The Outstanding Pilipinos in Los Angeles) Award for Leadership Excellence in Human Resources. 1Heart Caregiver Services is a certified member of CAHSAH and has been featured in Asian newspapers and other media publications all over the United States like Yahoo! News, Google, TV, radio and newspaper online due to its various accomplishments, corporate programs, and contribution to the senior care industry. Belina’s vision remains solid and strategic as the company moves forward in its goal of making a positive difference in the home care industry.

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