In the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s disease, schedule a session with a professional photographer for your family. Stay at home and have the photographer come to you/your family home. Take pictures of yourself and your parents, your parents and your kids and your parents together. Take group photos, candid photos, and individual photos of your loved one.
After a few years not only does age naturally change everyone, but after awhile, your loved one with Alzheimer’s will start to take care of themselves differently. Their hair will not be styled the way when someone else is doing it for them and eventually they will no longer pick out their own clothes or dress themselves. So, my advice for the early stages is to take professional photos now.
We did this recently and got one group photo of my parents, sisters, kids, spouses and all grandkids. It is a great picture but I wish we had done it sooner, when my mom looked more like herself. My mom doesn’t have much motor control anymore and it is difficult to get a photo of her looking at the camera, but we were able to get a few good shots.
Also, something I wish I did very early on, when my mom was very first diagnosed is to go over with a video camera and interview her. I would have asked her about the recipes she made. Was I really as sassy as my daughter when I was 5? Surely not?! Tell me about the day I was born, what was the weather like, what do you remember about that day? I wish I had made a video for each of my sisters of my mom talking about them. I wish I would have had her say something to my dad.
There are so many things to do in the early stages, but this would be my number one tip – document and capture memories early!
This doesn’t just have to be for those with Alzheimer’s. Ask more about your loved ones now and hit record!
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