Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease requires lots of time, planning, and attention to detail. Obviously, when a person’s memory is unreliable, it’s important to make sure that they’ve got a support system to help them accomplish important tasks and routines, like taking medication, preparing food, and getting exercise. At Post-it® Brand, we work with the Alzheimer's Association Minnesota-North Dakota Chapter, and, as part of our work, we’ve been honored and humbled to hear how our products have helped some Alzheimer’s caregivers make their jobs a little easier. We wanted to share their strategies to help other people find similar solutions.
One of the caregivers we spoke with told us how Post-it® Notes help her make sure her husband has completed a list of tasks for the day. Since he is still able to stay at home by himself and do lots of things independently, she wants to make sure he gets through his twice daily routine – doing things like feeding the dog and taking his medication. To make sure he remembers, she puts four Post-it® Super Sticky Notes on the refrigerator, two of one colour that say, “Take medication,” and two of another colour that say, “Feed the dog.” Since both tasks are done in the morning and afternoon, he simply has to look at the refrigerator, take down each Post-it® Note, and do the task that’s written on it. Because there are only four notes, he’ll notice and remove them without getting confused or overwhelmed, and, because he’s removed them, he and his caregiver can be sure that he’s already done each task and won’t repeat it by mistake.
Another caregiver we heard about uses Post-it® Notes to summarize news stories for her loved one. He used to love to read the paper, but now has a hard time remembering the stories that he reads. To help him maintain his quality of life by enjoying news stories, his caregiver writes a short Post-it® Note of the things he found interesting about each story and leaves the notes on the kitchen table where he can see them throughout the day. It helps him feel connected and aware, and keeps him from having to repeat questions over and over again.
There are other simple solutions we’ve heard about, too: Post-it® Notes can be used to label cupboards and drawers in the kitchen or bedroom or give simple instructions on the door of the medicine cabinet or microwave. Post-it® Flags can be used to point out instructions or places to notice in larger paragraphs or sentences, and Post-it® Reminder Tags attached to bags, purses, and other objects with handles or rings can help add instructions.
While caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease can be difficult and time-consuming, there are strategies that can make it at least a little easier. At Post-it® Brand, we’re proud to help caregivers in even a small way.