Mindfulness apps: How can I cope with the stress of caring for a spouse with dementia?

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How can I cope with the stress of caring for a spouse with dementia?

Question

I've chosen to keep my wife, who has dementia, at home for as long as possible. But I'm realizing that as her cognitive decline gets worse, I'm feeling the strain. I’ve begun seeing a counsellor, who is helping me practice mindfulness. Are there any apps that I could use on my iPad to supplement my work with her?

Our answer

It’s wonderful to hear that in the midst of caring for your wife you are also taking care of yourself by seeing a counsellor and seeking other supports.

There are many apps that help people develop healthy coping practices, such as mindfulness and meditation, on a daily basis. Most are free but have options for paid “premium” membership.

Here are direct links to a few apps for Apple devices that you might want to explore:

  • Calm provides guided meditations, “sleep stories,” breathing programs and relaxing music.
  • Mindfulness Coach was developed for people who may be experiencing emotional distress and for those wanting to maintain healthy coping practices.
  • Aware – Mindfulness Meditation provides a course in mindfulness and exercises to help you remain calm throughout the day.

For those using Android devices, here are direct links to a couple of options:

You may also be interested in visiting the Ability411 resources page, which offers some useful information on caregiver supports in the community.

 

Some technologies and devices may require an in-person assessment. Speak with your health care provider for additional information and support.

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