4 Tips on Navigating a Loved One’s Dementia

Data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that more than 16 million Americans care for someone who has been impacted by dementia. Caring for a person that you love who has dementia can require specific care techniques to make sure that the loved one functions in the best way possible. 


While it’s not a specific type of disease, dementia can impact various aspects of a person’s emotional and physical well-being. These changes can make caring for a person with dementia stressful as well as painful. 


As a care provider, it can prove helpful to understand some tips for making sure you provide your loved one afflicted with dementia with the best care possible.


# 1 – Speak Simply


Open-ended questions are perfectly acceptable for most people. These types of questions, however, are often challenging for people with dementia to answer. A person with dementia might have lost the ability to connect information into clear ideas and understandable answers. Instead of asking open-ended questions, if a loved one has dementia, it’s a much better idea to ask yes or no questions.


# 2 – Patience Is Critical


A loved one with dementia will likely have memory challenges and difficulty remembering things. Consequently, it’s critical to understand why it’s important why you should make every effort possible to relieve the emotional and mental trauma that your loved ones faces. 


Remember, rushing or providing anxiety to your loved one won’t help and will only result in agitation for the both of you.


# 3 – Remember Laughter


Laughter provides relaxation for most people. Laughter has also been proven to be particularly beneficial to people with memory loss. Laughter also provides relief from some of the stress that people feel as caretakers. 


If your loved one is still able to communicate through facial expression and body language, also remember that laughter can act as a critical bonding tool. 


# 4 – Craft Daily Routines


Having a daily routine for dementia patients helps to run things smoothly. Even if routines are not written in stone, they can still help to provide a sense of consistency. 


# 5 – Maintain a Sense of Structure


By following a daily routine for essential activities like waking up, mealtimes, bathing, and going to bed, it’s possible to make things much easier for a dementia patient. Observing these patterns can greatly increase the ease with which a dementia patient navigates living circumstances.


# 6 – Provide Expectations


It’s a good idea to give your loved one an expectation of what the day holds even if you are not sure that your loved one fully understands. Some caregivers have discovered that it can help to utilize cues to establish the different times of the day. If your loved one can do it, it’s also a good idea to include them in daily living activities. 


Speak with a Compassionate Elder Law Attorney


Elder law introduces many unique legal issues. One of the best ways to navigate such a situation is to obtain the assistance of an experienced lawyer. Contact Ettinger Law Firm today to schedule a free case evaluation.

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