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How to help the elderly cope with Dementia successfully

Posted on January 9, 2017 with 0 comments

Usually afflicting people who reach old age, dementia is a mental ailment that results in the afflicted person’s loss of cognitive ability, partial loss of memory, difficulty in understanding and keeping track of things. Elderly people are highly prone to some form of dementia of which the most common is Alzheimer’s disease.

Dementia has a tendency to surface gradually and increase over time rendering the person affected by it more and more dependent on other people for love, care and most importantly, support to get through it successfully. The people taking care need to realize that the person is not acting out of will in any case, but can’t do the things which seem quite normal to begin with. Simple things like remembering the person who takes care of dementia patient can become increasingly difficult when under the pretext of this disease.
Opening the lines of communication and understanding the special needs and requirements of the patient is highly important when it comes to allowing the patient to cope successfully and not fall into further mental deterioration.

Making the Person Feel Comfortable:

When elderly people develop dementia, they tend to become more and more difficult to handle as when they cannot seem to remember things or people, they can become angry or be rude. Anyone taking care of such a person would first need to realize that neutralizing these barriers is necessary to create a favorable environment for the patient.
Dementia does not a have cure and the medications at present only stand to slow down the problems and issues but cannot stop them fully or start a reversal. Dementia happens when brain cells start getting damaged and cannot forge a connection with each other, a vital
component of health brain functionality.

In light of these facts, one must need to realize that screaming and yelling would only stand to aggravate the problem instead of helping the patient cope with this disease. Easier communication will only happen when you accept that your loved one has now changed and will remain so for the rest of their lives and once it’s established you can definitely be of help to the patient by better understanding their needs and requirements.

How to make communication Easier:

When a person with dementia needs something or wants to tell something, it finds it difficult to explain it properly making it angrier. As a loved one your task is to make these things easier and seamless and take care of a few factors when communicating with an elderly
dementia patient;

• They have a restrained mental functioning, don’t forget that. Using ambiguity in front of them will only complicate things for them. Never use words which carry an air of ambiguity like he, she or they, when talking to a person with dementia, this will create confusion on their parts. Every time they would need constant reminders on who specific people are and what they are doing there or what they are supposed to do with a thing handed over to them.

• Acquaint them with their surroundings on a regular basis. They are forgetting things and this can cause them to feel alienated. Take them out for walks and make them move around the house instead of being confined to a single room or just the bed. Every time you do this, make sure that you introduce everything afresh. Doing this can help the patient understand things better and even help remembering some of them constantly.

• Dementia can cause the patient to develop a propensity towards harmful behavior which can sometimes be even life threatening. Use of force is not recommended when such an incident does occur as the patient might become resentful and make it a dangerous situation for everyone. Calm the patient down slowly and gradually and use a friendly tone instead of coercion.
Dementia can be contained in its damage but a person is required at all times near the patient to take care and even if you are not available due to work or some other commitments, going for senior home care services would be a great idea. Even if this is getting difficult, transfer the patient to elderly care services to make the situation more favorable for the patient.

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