Dealing with Dementia: Elder Care Do’s & Dont’s

by Garden of Palms

Dealing with Dementia: Elder Care Do’s & Dont’s

More often than not challenging behavioral problems are presented by mid to late stage Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. People end up behaving in an aggressive and occasionally violent manner (both verbally and physically) as a result of the paranoia, depression, fear and anger brought about by the disease. It’s always beneficial for family and friends to know how to identify such episodes and act accordingly.

Alzheimer's Care by Garden of Palms in Los Angeles, CA

Overcoming Problems Caused by Dementia

Perhaps one of the most unsettling aspects when taking care of someone with Alzheimer's or some other type of mild cognitive impairment is problems with communication. There is nothing more overwhelming for those troubled by mild cognitive impairment. It can be difficult for family members and care providers to understand why patients behave the way they do. Memory care experts and assisted living specialists attribute it to brain changes directly correlated to their disease. Familiarize yourself with the following scenarios so the next time that your loved one says something shocking, you’ll know how to respond in an effective and calm manner.

Scenario #1: Time or Place Confusion

When living in a memory care or assisted living facility one of the most common reactions is wanting to go home.

How to react: Try and find a calm way to remind your loved one about where they are. Tangible reminders like photos and other items can definitely help, however it can be better to reposition the person, especially in situations where your loved one is in the process of moving into an assisted living facility.

Scenario #2: Aggressive Behavior

It is important to remember that verbalized or physical aggression is always unpurposeful when someone is being troubled by dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.There are always triggers that lead the patient there, so in an effort to avoid them, it’s best to learn how to identify and take precautionary measures against them. Bad communication, discomfort and unfamiliar spaces are only some of them.

How to react: So, what is the underlying cause of the physical or verbal aggression apparent in your loved one? First off, be sure to identify the root cause. Ensure that they are not endangering themselves or anyone else involved and try to shift their focus to something else. Remember to always speak in a reassuring and calm tone.

Scenario #3: Cognitive Issues

Being troubled by simple math, falsely accusing people, repeating things and being unable to judge situations appropriately are some of the indicators in memory issues. These are caused by the decreasing functionality of brain cells - some may indeed be more subtle than others, yet you need to learn how to overcome their delusions and mistaken beliefs.

How to react: One of the first things you need to do is evaluate the extent of the problem. Have them sort how to pay a bill at a restaurant, or take a look at bills and check if they are long overdue. When you see such changes taking place, it's best to be encouraging and reassuring and always try and minimize frustration for your loved ones.

Contact Garden of Palms Assisted Living and Memory Care

It’s undeniably one of the most difficult periods in any family setting and it’s best to be prepared in advance. The most sensible thing to do is hire expert help at home, or research and find an assisted living facility that offers highly specialized solutions for residents with such needs. This shall help ease your loved one in this new period of their lives. A secure and overall ideal living environment, with cutting-edge equipment and amenities as well as an abundance of specialized solutions is what they ultimately need. Garden of Palms, an assisted living facility in Los Angeles, provides specialized treatment for Jewish elders all the way from religious activities to Kosher meals. It’s best to identify the facility that best meets your loved one’s needs and wants.

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