Dementia: Tips for Caregivers.

By Shanaïs Jacaman    Published  August 23rd, 2021

It is said that being able to communicate effectively is one of the most important of all human skills. Well it specially comes in handy when it comes to dealing with our loved ones affected by dementia. Since dementia gradually affects the way a person communicates, it is important to understand how to adjust our communication skills accordingly.

Caregiving for people affected by dementia can be physically and emotionally exhausting. Thankfully there are tools and tips that will — if you apply them — make it much easier for you to overcome this challenge. Grab a pen and a paper because we carefully curated for you the 7 most important and helpful tips when it comes to managing typical dementia behaviours in the elderly.


  1. Stay supportive and Kind.

Anger is disguised Fear. When facing aggressive or combative behaviour we often forget that it stems out of fear. When people with dementia feel helpless and frightened they will express this emotion by protecting themselves — hence the aggressive behaviour. In this scenario you must try to stay light and gentle while removing your loved one from overwhelming surroundings. Getting angry, yelling or even restraining your distressed elderly will only accentuate their anxiety.


  1. Communicate with simple, direct language.

A question that might seem very simple for you can be overly complicated for someone who suffers from dementia. Try using a sentence structure that will allow them to answer with a yes or no. Use available items such as pictures, that will help them understand what you are trying to say. It can also be difficult for them to remember things. We suggest using user-friendly tools such as to-do lists  to help keep them as independent as possible. 


  1. Simplify tasks. 

When a task comes up and your elderly is overwhelmed by it or makes poor decisions related to it, listen carefully & offer subtle help. You don’t want them to think you are pointing fingers or make them feel alienated. Working together will help them keep their pride and keep a minimum sense of accomplishment. Every task can be broken down into smaller steps, and you have the ability to change your tone by making them think the credit was all theirs.


  1. Set boundaries. 

You can be Mother Theresa or even the pope, you still need to set boundaries. Why? When boundaries are crossed you are putting yourself at risk by giving too much power away. You can’t help other people without helping yourself first and making sure that your bubble is respected. If you feel angry try to take a walk and let your emotions cool down before you get back to the person you are communicating with. The best way to handle manipulation is to verbalize clearly what your limits are and make sure they are not crossed.


  1. Don’t hold dementia behaviours against your loved ones.

No matter what past events you’ve experienced in the past with dementia patients, never hold their illness against them. A great way to do that is by dissociating them with their illness. Refrain from using accusatory language when communicating with them — telling them they are liars won’t make the situation better. Whenever something dreadful happens, know that it is dementia, not them. 


  1. Consider non-verbal forms of communication.

Spoken conversations are not always the optimal choice when it comes to expressing ourselves. Body language should also match the emotion we are trying to convey. Furthermore, writing a letter or an email may help your loved one understand your message better since it allows them to process the information with no pressure. 


  1. Active listening.

Active listening is the process of listening attentively when someone speaks by reflecting back what is said, withholding judgment, and giving advice only when asked. This communication skill allows the other person to feel valued and listened to as their emotions and words are highly acknowledged. Active listening also builds stronger relationships and will help improve your connection with the elderly you are caring for.


Even though challenging to apply, all those tips will help persons with dementia maintain their dignity and self-esteem while helping preserve your patience and sanity. A kind attitude, with an appropriate body language and a calm environment can go a long way.


Reach out to us at KAD care with any questions you might have. We will be happy to guide you and together come up with a customized care plan, specific to your needs or those of your loved one.



American Psychological Association, Living Well With Dementia.

John Hopkins Medicine, Facing Dementia in the Family.


National Institute on Aging, Alzheimer’s and Hallucinations, Delusions, and Paranoia.

10 Tips to Help Protect Elders from the Upcoming Summer Heat.

By Shanaïs Jacaman    Published  July 14, 2021

The older we get the more our ability to endure summer heat decreases. That is why it is very important not only to keep our elderly safe, but also to help them find activities that will keep them cool, entertained and active. Not only does spending time outdoors feel good, but engaging in social activities also improves mental and physical well-being. Don’t look elsewhere; here are 20 safe activities your elders can enjoy doing this summer.

Go Fishing 

Fishing is an inexpensive way to spend time in a calm and peaceful environment. It can help seniors de-stress and motivate them towards a healthier lifestyle. 


Attend A Coffee Shop

One of the primary reasons why coffee shops have become so popular over the last decade is their relaxed and open feel. It is a great way for seniors to nurture their social lives.


Visit Museums

The primary role of museums is to engage and educate the community which makes them one of the most interesting places to go for seniors. Not to mention, many museums offer free summer activities. 


Take In a Sporting Event

Many stadiums offer discounts for senior citizens, & it is a great way to spend time with family members and friends while staying entertained.


Outdoor Event

Whether it’s a concert or a theater, more and more events are happening outdoors while staying covid-friendly. On top of that most of these events start in the evening when the temperature is cooler.


Visit The Local Mall

Walking in the mall is a great way for senior citizens to stay active while getting out of the house and staying cool. You can have lunch together and take advantage to shop for things they might need at home.


Bird Watching

Bird watching is an exciting and healthy hobby, done alone or in the company of friends. It is a great activity for seniors who wish to connect with nature and calm their minds.



Older adults benefit from music that improves their moods and productivity, lowers their stress, brings back old memories, encourages socialization, and promotes overall mental and physical health.


Folding Clothes 

Folding clothes is a surprisingly great way to promote a sense of engagement in patients with advanced forms of dementia. It’s a simple and effective way to keep them active. 



According to Psychology Today, cooking can be a therapeutic activity because it is a creative outlet and it allows for a sense of purpose. It is a delicious way to give and receive while spending time with your loved ones.


Pick Berries

Berries are some of the healthiest foods you can eat, as they’re low in calories but high in fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants. It is a sweet activity for seniors to enjoy during summer and you’ll be able to bake pies with all the berries you picked.


Practice Tai Chi 

Tai Chi is a safe way to enhance physical and mental health, as well as to improve posture, balance, flexibility, and strength. It can help adults of all ages boost their mood, alleviate pain, strengthen their immune system, and improve their heart health.



Volunteering gives seniors more opportunities to be social, it can also lower their risk of depression often linked with isolation. Taking part in meaningful activities helps in keeping an active brain, which lowers the risks for dementia & Alzheimer’s.


Visit A Farmer’s Market

Visiting a Farmer’s Market is a great way to impact local communities and allow farmers to continue to provide fresh, sustainable produce directly from their farm to your family. It is a safe and healthy way to keep seniors entertained this summer.


Create A Garden

Gardening brings families together and keeps seniors active while providing freshly picked vegetables and fruits. Watching a seed grow into a plant helps create a sense of pride and purpose.


Have A Picnic

Picnics are an inexpensive way to enjoy nature while eating home cooked meals. It is also a fun activity where seniors can play social games and talk about the lovely memories of their past. 


Go To The Park

Many seniors are deficient in vitamin D, which is an important nutrient for their health. Going to the park for a walk will help them get enough sunshine while keeping them active. Don’t forget to protect them from over exposure to the sun with sunscreen and proper summer clothing’s. 


Go Swimming

Swimming makes your heart stronger and improves your cardiovascular health and endurance. It will also lower your blood pressure, improve your circulation, and help reduce the risk of heart and lung disease. It is a safe, healthy and pleasant way for senior citizens to enjoy summer while staying fresh.


Read A Book

Scientific studies have found many benefits of reading for older adults, from reducing stress and enhancing sleep to improving memory circuits, sharpening decision-making and possibly even delaying the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.


Get A Cold Treat

Last but not least; refresh yourself and your family with a delicious ice cream or a healthy smoothie. According to a study, eating ice cream increases dopamine levels, which helps to keep human beings awake and alert. 


You may want to keep your elderly safe by avoiding the high temperatures of summer by keeping them indoors. However, there are many delightful activities that are safe for them to do. Keep those in your notes and remember that with each of these activities, your loved ones still need to be watched for signs of fatigue, dehydration, sunburn, and overheating. Make sure they are clothed properly and that they are able to stay hydrated throughout the day. 

Reach out to us at KAD care with any questions you might have. We will be happy to guide you and together come up with a customized care plan, specific to your needs or those of your loved one.

10 Tips to Help Protect Elders from the Upcoming Summer Heat.

Summer is right around the corner! We have been patiently waiting for this moment all year and now it is time to enjoy it to the fullest.


This means taking advantage of nature, traveling to new places, spending quality time with our family and friends, but it also means taking all the precautions possible to protect ourselves and our loved ones from devastating heat.

Every summer, many older adults are hospitalized due to dehydration and hot weather. It is crucial to keep in mind that summertime poses more health and safety risk to seniors than any other generation. Fortunately, the rate of hospitalization can be drastically decreased by bringing awareness and reminding everyone around us of the many tips available to avoid heat-related damage. 


We’ve gathered the 9 most important tips on how to help protect our elderly from the upcoming summer heat! Those tips are relevant to them but also to the younger adults, so take notes and make sure you share this valuable information with all your loved ones!


Cool Down!


One of the easiest ways to combat the heat is by cooling yourself down. Take lukewarm baths and showers, soak washcloths with cool water and tap use them to refresh yourself. If you do not own an air conditioner make sure to get one and learn how to use it. Get ice creams and popsicle sticks, or prepare fruit smoothies for a healthier snack. 




We can’t repeat this tip enough! Elders are more susceptible to dehydration due to many factors. It is therefore super important to stay hydrated as much as possible. Make sure to avoid alcohol and caffeine which is counter-effective when it comes to hydratation. Drink plenty of liquids such as of course water, but also fresh juices and soups. Certain foods can also help maintain fluids in your body such as cucumbers, watermelon, apples and berries. 


Dress Appropriately. 


Ensure you have weather appropriate clothes such as loose-fitting clothing, wide breathable hats and light coloured clothes. Dressing appropriately also means making sure you have alternative clothes close by in case of chilly weather at night or in the event of rain. Having sturdy protective sunglasses is also a great way to minimize eye damage from sun exposure. 


Avoid Sun Exposure.


Enjoying summer also means protecting yourself from direct sun exposure. If you enjoy outdoor activities, try to plan them out early in the morning or later during the day in order to avoid sunburns and unbearable heat. On very hot days, and if you have air conditioning available at home it is best to completely avoid going outside.


Emergency Contacts.


Make sure to have contacts you can call in emergency situations. Not only family contacts but also people who live close to you. When you go out make sure someone knows how long you’ll be out for and where you will be. Make sure you have a family member or professional caregiver check in on you once in a while.


Take Breaks!


While staying active is a must, it is also important to learn how to take breaks – especially in hot weather. During summer, because of humidity and heat, your body tends to tire out a lot quicker than in any other season. Remember to stay rehydrate yourself during those breaks and make sure your skin is still protected from UV rays. 




Stay fresh and clean – especially if you have skin conditions. Heat makes it easier to sweat and therefore we tend to carry more bacteria and BO. Using mild cleanser with ph balanced formulas is a great alternative to harsh soaps. Elders tend to have fragile and sensitive skin. It is important not to scrub delicate skin and pat dry it instead of rubbing off water with a towel. 




Air conditioning as much as heat can dry off precious sensitive skin. One of the most important tips to prevent dryness and sun burns is to moisturize! Buy sensitive skin creams, a broad spectrum sunscreen lotion, SPF sprays and do not forget to use them! Creams act as barriers and they are only effective if you use them as often as needed!


Be careful with medication


Make sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist if your medications interact with sun exposure as they can sometimes make your skin extra sensitive and more prone to sun related damage! Make sure your medication is stored in cool places and refrigerated if it is needed. Contact your doctor or pharmacist to make sure you follow the right instructions for each of them. 




You are now ready to enjoy your summer to the fullest! Keep those tips close, such as pinned to your refrigerator in case you need a reminder. 



Reach out to us at KAD care with any questions you might have. We will be happy to guide you and together come up with a customized care plan, specific to your needs or those of your loved one.


7 Signs it’s Time to Hire a Caregiver for your Parents.

By Shanaïs Jacaman    Published May 4th, 2021


In recent decades, there has been a growing shift away from institutional forms of care for Canadians with chronic health conditions or aging needs to an increased reliance on care within the home (Keefe, Hawkins and Fancy 2013)

This emphasis on home care has accompanied changes in Canada’s age structure, with seniors representing a growing segment of the population, combined with the emergent preference for ‘aging in place’ – remaining at one’s home regardless of age or ability (Pynoos, Nishita, Cicero, and Caraviello 2008)

 However, knowing when it’s time to hire help for mom and dad isn’t always clear. Often, people won’t hire any help until the situation becomes critical; after an injury or when illnesses becomes too difficult to manage on our own. Waiting that long is a bad idea. Waiting that long means more care will be required and you might as well be on the edge of a burn out. In order to make the transition from being independent to hiring a caregiver as smooth as possible for you and your loved one we gathered few signs that will help you know WHEN it is time for you to consider hiring a caregiver.


Unusually Poor Memory: Forgetting things from time to time such as not remembering where your keys is one thing, but forgetting to eat is another. Obviously you don’t want your loved one to starve to death, therefore it is very important to monitor their diet and to ask them simple questions, for instance; “What have you eaten today?”. If your loved one can’t answer this question properly, missed bill payments or doctors’ appointments, then it could be a sign they need to consult their doctor as well as a sign for you to consider hiring help.


Missed Pills: Failing to take medications once in a while is not uncommon (no matter the age), but when it becomes too often then it may become a serious problem. Try to monitor your seniors’ pill intake by buying them a pill organizer/dispenser and checking if they the dispenser is empty on the days they should’ve taken their medication.


Hygiene: With age, seniors can often begin to neglect their personal care and hygiene. As it is a very important aspect when it comes to maintaining a good health, it is also a very personal task. Most senior won’t tell you they need help to wash themselves or even changing clothes. We have to keep in mind they have their pride, same as you and me, and they won’t admit they need help. You must look out for yourself, offer help when needed, but also observe the signs. Maybe they’ve worn the same clothes for days? Maybe their scent is stronger than usual? If you can’t help your loved ones in daily living task, it might be time to consider hiring.


Home clutter: Most of the time, family members can help their loved ones with cleaning the house, laundry, declutter, getting rid of expired food, groceries and more. Not always though. If you notice a decrease in the general home environment when it comes to all the chores mentioned above, and the help provided to them is not enough, then it might be a sign of physical or mental incapacity from your loved one and you should definitely hire a caregiver to help out.


Loneliness: “A situation of social isolation involves few social contacts and few social roles, as well as the absence of mutually rewarding relationships.” Source: Keefe, J., Andrew, M., Fancey, P. & Hall, M. (2006). Final Report: A Profile of Social Isolation in Canada. Submitted to the Chair of the F/P/T Working Group on Social Isolation.

While all of the signs shows indication that your loved one do not need help or assistance with daily living, it doesn’t prevent them from loneliness. Loneliness in elders is unfortunately very common and can often contribute to health problems such as Depression, Dementia and Alzheimer’s. Sometimes our parents live far away or we are simply too busy to give them the time they need. Companionship is a great service home care agencies offer in order to combat elder’s loneliness.

Family Member Stress: It is very hard to set boundaries when it comes to loved ones and sometimes we fail to do so until we implode. It is very important for our own sake and the sake of other’s to know when it is time to delegate. Elders already feel guilty having to ask for help so it is important they feel the help provided is kind and stress-free.

Health and Mobility Issues: If your parent is mentally and physically ill, it is important to consider having a conversation with their doctor about what level of help is needed in order for them to live comfortably. If they have trouble walking, getting out of bed, or gets lost when they run simple errands then you should consider hiring help and make their life as comfortable and as safe as possible.


When the time is right, hiring a caregiver to tend to a loved one needs, and be there for them when you are at work or caring for your own family, is the best decision you will ever make. Not only it will give you the peace of mind knowing that your loved one is not alone, it will also help you avoid burn out from trying to manager it all.

Sometimes, pride from elders, and the lack of ability to say NO when we can’t help them anymore will cause more harm than good. Improving quality of life whether it is your own or the life of others will always be a great investment.


Reach out to us at KAD care with any questions you might have. We will be happy to guide you and together come up with a customize care plan specific to your needs or those of your loved one.