Calming the Storm of a Dementia Outburst in Public

An elderly woman stands in a grocery store, leaning on a shopping cart and appearing to prepare for a dementia outburst in public.
Learn how to effectively handle a dementia outburst in public.

Alzheimer’s is unpredictable, to say the least. It can transform a person’s personality, mood, and behaviors quickly. When you’re at home providing care for a person with Alzheimer’s, these changes can be challenging enough to manage. But what happens when you’re at a restaurant, grocery store, or hair salon and experience a dementia outburst in public?

Tips on How to Transform Cringeworthy to Calm

Concern about a dementia outburst in public can make you want to steer clear of going out at all with someone with Alzheimer’s. However, being out in the community is very important. It provides someone with dementia a sense of purpose, eases loneliness and isolation, offers opportunities to socialize, and more.

Learning how to deal with an embarrassing situation before going out is key. These guidelines will help.

  • Keep calm. Your demeanor and attitude are highly contagious to a loved one with Alzheimer’s. Take a deep breath and give yourself a pep talk before stepping out the door. Remind yourself to remain calm and patient, regardless of what occurs.
  • Carry cards. If you are concerned about how an outburst may impact others around you, create some small business-sized cards that you can discreetly hand out. They can simply state, “Please forgive any rude behaviors or outbursts. They are the result of dementia.”
  • Monitor triggers. Keep a journal to note details on challenging behaviors in public and then try to find commonalities. You may find, for instance, that the individual does well in a small store or restaurant, but becomes distraught whenever there are large crowds, an excessive amount of noise, or bright lights. There might be a certain time of day that is more distressing to be out, or physical needs might be an issue, such as fatigue, thirst, hunger, pain, or even the need to use the restroom.

How Home Care Can Help

Our dementia care experts are available to help manage the effects of the disease, with skill, patience, and creativity. As seasoned care professionals who are fully trained in a wide range of dementia care needs, we have seen it all! We know how to restore calm to a person who is agitated or distressed, ensuring respect and dignity throughout an outburst.

Some of the many challenging symptoms of dementia we are available to help manage include:

  • Anxiety
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Hallucinations and delusions
  • Aggression
  • Restlessness
  • Sundowning
  • Wandering
  • And more

Whether you are interested in just a few hours of respite care to allow time to take a break, overnight support or live-in care to ensure safety and wellbeing while you get much-needed rest, or anything in between, we are here for you.

Contact us at 213-383-2273 for more resources and tips, and to learn more about our specialized in-home dementia care in Hollywood, Encino, Santa Monica, and the surrounding areas.