Dementia is a common disorder that many individuals struggle with, especially older adults. This illness affects all aspects of an individual’s life – their physical, emotional, social and mental well-being. However, despite this being a common illness, many caregivers are still largely unaware of how exactly to deal with loved ones struggling with dementia. They are unable to provide their loved ones with the type of support they actually need which results in dementia causing a decrease in the quality of life of both the patient and the other individuals around them. We understand this struggle which is why we have compiled a list of do’s and don’ts when dealing with a loved one who displays dementia behaviors. Read on to find out more!
What are the Symptoms of Dementia?
Before understanding how to deal with loved ones with dementia, you must first understand what dementia behaviors are. These are some of the more common ones that you might see:
- Forgetting events that have just occurred
- Forgetting to do daily chores
- Showing sudden signs of aggression and confusion
As always, if any of these symptoms get more serious or aggressive, you should reach out to a trusted medical professional who might be able to help you better. However, if these symptoms remain mild and manageable, here are some dos and don’ts that might be helpful for you to know.
Do: Provide Your Loved Ones with Structure
Since a common emotion that most individuals with dementia struggle with is confusion, providing a more structured lifestyle can help to simplify daily life in their minds. For example, fixing the day or date of the month when you go on regular visits such as the dentist or the doctor can help them remember their appointments better. You can also keep objects that they always use in one particular place so that this is easier for them to reach. Labeling compartments and drawers might also help to ease the feelings of confusion.
Do: Speak to Your Loved Ones In a Simpler Manner
Your loved one might struggle to even follow along with complex sentences as a result of dementia. Hence, one way you can help them would be to speak in a more simplified manner. Drop the convoluted sentences as your loved one might get lost in your confusing speech. This might end up creating more unhappiness and confusion within them! You can also ask them more yes/no questions to make communication easier.
Don’t: Be Aggressive
Getting angry at your loved one and shaming them for their forgetfulness is a no-go. This might just create more fear within them and lead them to feel ostracized from you, which might strain your relationship with them.
Do: Consider a Retirement Community
Retirement communities like ours can be a great place for your loved one to manage their dementia. We have a special memory care program that can greatly aid them in adapting to living with dementia. Retirement communities can be extremely useful if you feel as though you’re unable to provide your loved one with the support that they need. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help!