It may sometimes be a little intimidating to know exactly what to say and just how to behave when spending time with a loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s. And, sadly, due to some of the inherent issues with the condition, oftentimes relatives feel so uncomfortable that they avoid going to see the person at all. Understanding a little more about the condition and what to anticipate, and preparing in advance for the best way to manage challenging behaviors, can really improve the likelihood of a positive visit with your loved one. And JFS Care, a top provider of dementia care in Santa Monica, CA and the surrounding areas, is always on hand to help with effective strategies and tips.
The main difficulties family and friends encounter with their loved one with dementia end up in one of three categories: a change in behavior, reduced memory, and communication ability; and the level of difficulty will probably fluctuate in accordance with the particular stage of the disease the senior is currently experiencing.
To help overcome these challenges and make the visit as enjoyable as possible, JFS Care’s dementia care professionals recommend the following approach:
- Start off your visit with a smile, and be prepared to re-introduce yourself when necessary.
- Use very simple language and brief sentences, and communicate slowly.
- Try to avoid arguing with or correcting the senior.
- Bring along photos from a favorite past memory for reminiscing.
- Listen to some of the person’s favorite music together, and ask the older adult to dance if he or she would like!
- Going for a walk together if at all possible, or just about any other physical exercise, can make the visit more fulfilling for both of you.
- Stay calm during your visit, no matter if the senior becomes agitated or displays inappropriate behavior.
- Maintain a sense of respect throughout your conversation, knowing the person likely will repeat questions and statements.
- Cut down on distractions to give the person your full attention.
- Most importantly, keep in mind who the senior was pre-dementia, and remind the individual what she or he has done that has inspired you or helped you grow into the person that you are today.
To get more advice on effective communication with those who have been diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s, and for specialized hands-on care assistance, contact the dementia care experts at JFS Care. Our knowledgeable caregivers are fully trained and experienced in a number of tactics to make certain seniors with dementia remain secure and safe and are able to live life to the fullest, with the utmost respect and compassion all the time. Contact us online or call us at (213) 383-2273 to learn more about our specialized dementia care in Santa Monica, CA and the surrounding communities.
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