It is easy to accumulate many boxes of memories and keepsakes, magazines from over the years that we said we would refer back to and clothing that we kept thinking we would wear again one day. Every once in a while you think back on all that you have accumulated and know that it is time to sit down and begin the process of filtering through all of it. A cluttered home can cause anxiety, and as we age and especially if you or a loved one is experiencing early stages of Alzheimer’s or Dementia, clutter can increase the level of frustration and confusion.
In addition to the frustration and increased stress, clutter in the home can be a hazard and create safety concerns. And, it can be the culprit for missing medications or valuables. Taking time to declutter, to organize items into plastic bins, and to donate items not being used will help create a safer and less confusing home environment. At the time, this task may seem daunting so consider jumping in slowly. Maybe take one room at a time or one stack of papers and magazines at a time.
If your loved one is experiencing the early stages of memory loss, consider decluttering now while your loved one is still able to participate in the memories and help identify if the items will be donated, if they will be shared with friends or just organized and boxed to be placed in storage.
Over the years, we also see an increase in junk mail, magazines and paperwork. Discontinuing magazines and removing yourself from mailing lists will help reduce the amount of mail received on a daily basis. This is a pile that can grow easily each week, so consider taking time to remove your loved one from these lists so that the amount of mail received is reduced.
Creating an organized, clean home environment will reduce stress and anxiety and will allow you as well as your loved one to feel more relaxed and comfortable in the home.