Three Tips When Helping a Parent Who Has Dementia

Three helpful tips from Kay Bransford’s Blog for helping anyone who has dementia:

Dealing with Dementia

If you are finding it difficult to adapt to and visit a loved one who has any form of dementia (Alzheimer’s, multi-infarct, vascular, lewy-body, and Parkinson’s) here are three tips that helped me to manage through my visit, while helping my loved ones navigate the changes happening around them:

1) Always smile and patiently answer questions. I realized that the emotion of the moment was more of a factor in any interaction with my mom. I would take a deep breath, smile, and answer the question. You can use some simple tactics to redirect the questions by suggesting a new activity (walk, snack break, craft) or excuse yourself for a few minutes (go wash your hands, empty the dishwasher).

2) Don’t say “Remember.” Unfortunately, short-term memory is usually the first to go so recognize that they can’t remember, and reminding them of it may only increase their anxiety and suspicion…

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