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Alzheimer's and Dementia Dementia Care at Home

What Does Redirection Look Like with Someone Who Has Dementia?

People who have dementia may not have the mental capacity to control all their thoughts. For instance, if your elderly loved one has dementia, they will likely get occupied with one specific thought and not be able to let it go easily. An example might be that they are insistent that they need to go visit a friend (who they actually haven’t seen in decades). You aren’t going to be able to convince them they don’t really know that person anymore because they truly believe they do.

In instances where your elderly loved one is insistent on something, you and the in-home care providers may want to try redirection. What does redirection look like with someone who has dementia?

Look Into Their Environment

If your elderly loved one is insistent that they need or want to do something, but it isn’t possible, you may want to change their thoughts on this. While that may not be possible, there could be something in their environment that is triggering them to feel the way they are.

In-Homecare in Portage MI
In-Homecare in Portage MI

You or a senior care provider should take some time to look into your elderly loved one’s environment. Maybe, they pulled out an old photo album and saw their best friend from years ago. Since their brain doesn’t work as well as it used to due to the dementia, they may believe they are still friends with that person. If you can get their focus redirected on something else, then you can put the photo album away. That could help your elderly loved one to calm down.

Reasoning Won’t Work

If your elderly loved one has dementia and they are stuck on something, understanding that reasoning won’t work is the first step to getting past the situation.

Instead of trying to reason with your elderly loved one, you can try redirecting them. For example, in the friend story above, you could try telling your elderly loved one that they can see their in-home care provider (somebody they get along with). If you can get someone over to their house that they connect with, it could take their mind off wanting to see their “friend”.

Have Them Do Something With You

If your elderly loved one is still stuck on something, you might be able to redirect them by saying that you will do an activity with them. Sometimes, by saying “let’s do this together”, instead of saying “I need you to do this”, can make all the difference. If you can’t do something with your elderly loved one at that time, maybe you can have an in-home care provider do an activity with them.

Conclusion

These are some of the examples of how redirection might look with someone who has dementia. If your elderly loved one is focused on one thing and can’t seem to let it go, hopefully, these redirection tips will help.

Sources
https://www.alz.org/media/Documents/alzheimers-dementia-related-behaviors-ts.pdf

If you are considering in-homecare in Portage, MI, for an aging loved one, please call the caring staff at Fresh Perspective Home Care at (269) 329-4717. We are here to help!

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Alzheimer's and Dementia Dementia Care at Home

Four Big Benefits of Routines for Aging Adults with Dementia

Dementia changes how your senior’s brain functions, which can create bigger differences in the rest of her life than she expects. In the past, she might have had a loose set of routines for her day. As her dementia progresses, though, your senior may find that it’s much more important than ever before to have some solid routines that cover all of the bases for her. Here are some reasons that might be more important now than ever before.

Retaining Skills and Functioning

When your elderly family member has routines in place that work for her, her brain and her body are used to those routines and activities. Even if her working memory doesn’t actively recall that it’s time for her to eat, for instance, her body will be ready to eat at consistent mealtimes. But muscle memory helps, too, and routines are good for both building and retaining muscle memory with frequent tasks.

Maintaining Independence for as Long as Possible

Your elderly family member may have dementia, but that doesn’t mean that she wants to lose her independence completely. Routines help her to have ways to continue to be able to do what she can on her own for as long as possible. There may come a point where in-home care providers offer additional assistance or prompts, but she’s still doing as much independently as she can.

Reducing Negative Feelings

There are a lot of feelings that come up as your senior’s cognition changes. In the earlier stages, there may be a lot of frustration or even anger at what’s happening. But later, anxiety is more common. With regular routines, your senior may find that she feels calmer and that she’s better able to manage anxiety and other negative feelings. When those routines are disrupted, you’re more likely to see signs of anxiety.

Makes Life Easier for You as a Caregiver

But routines help you, too. Knowing what happens next allows you to manage your own stress levels. Also, being able to rely on in-home care providers gives you a chance to build your own support routines. All of this can help you to feel more organized and less chaotic during each day.

If you’re finding that it is becoming difficult to know what routines your senior needs, consider working with in-home care. They can help you and your elderly family member to find routines that support her needs.

If you are considering in-home care in Miamisburg, MI, for an aging loved one, please call the caring staff at Fresh Perspective Home Care at (269) 329-4717. We are here to help!