Dementia, in general, is a progressive brain disorder that makes it difficult for a person to function on a daily basis. May it be remembering things, thought process, communication with other people, and even taking care of themselves. The most common type of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease which is around 75% of the cases around the world. Dementia also causes mood swings, change in personality, and even behavior. When dealing with a person with dementia, it’s always better to have them home. Home health care in California aims to promote more effective ways in helping them cope and slow down the progression of the condition.
Handling dementia can be challenging but here are some ways to do so.
Give a Positive Emotion when Interacting
When taking care of a person with dementia, it is always a must to have a positive emotion or atmosphere. Talking to the patient will always be more than just communicating with words. Things such as feelings, facial expression, tone of one’s voice, and the physical touch will be more useful than just words. By building proper rapport with the patient, it gives the feeling of familiarity and security that is essential when taking care of them. Amavi provides consistent assignments that help patients better build that rapport with their caregivers.
Keep Their Attention
One of the reasons why home health care is better for a person with Dementia is because there are less distractions that will hinder them from paying attention to the person in charge of them. Since dementia makes it difficult for a person to concentrate, it’s much better to have as few distractions as possible. Limit noise by turning off the radio or TV, shut the curtains and doors, and make the environment quieter.
Before talking to the patient, it is better to make sure to address them by name, state your name and relation to them, and use other means to communicate further, such as touching or non verbal cues. In the case that the patient is sitting, make sure to get down to their level and maintain eye contact. This way, their attention will remain and it will be easier to communicate with the patient.
As dementia continuously changes a person’s behavior and personality, it is not uncommon for a patient to act out and be aggressive. When this happens, always remember to remain calm and use what you know to help the person calm down and understand the situation. It is better to not engage in an argument or contradict the patient’s argument. Be mindful of one’s tone when correcting the person with dementia so that they will lower down their guard and disregard their hostile and aggressive behavior.
Worse comes to worst, remember to distract and redirect. If they become too agitated, suggest going for a walk or go eat something nice that will help them be distracted from the thing that agitated them. Also remember to connect to the patient on an emotional level before suggesting a redirection. Taking care of a person with dementia will be a breeze only if one has the patience to listen and explain everything to them repeatedly.
Ask Simple Questions and Listen Attentively
Questions should be answerable by yes or no most of the time. Make the patient’s life easier by not making them think too much. Refrain from asking open-ended questions or even giving them too many choices that may confuse them while deciding on their answer.
For example, instead of asking “What do you want to eat today?”, ask them “Do you want to eat porridge or chicken today?”. Giving them options helps them decide much faster than having them think of what they want.
Alongside that, always be patient when they are thinking about their answer. If the patient is struggling to answer, it’s okay to suggest words in order to help them complete their trail of thought or sentence.Watch out for non-verbal cues and body language and respond appropriately. Always remember to listen not just with the ears but also with the heart, this is one of the firm beliefs when providing home health care in California.
Remember the Days While Creating More Memories
People with dementia may not remember what happened thirty minutes ago but they can recall what happened thirty years earlier. It helps the patient exercise their minds if they are asked to recall their early memories, may it be childhood or teenage years.
In line with this, avoid asking questions that rely on short-term memory. Instead, ask questions about the patient’s distant past because that information will most likely be retained. But also keep in mind to cherish the time that they have so never stop creating more memories with them.
Yes, they may forget about it after quite some time but you, the person with them, will not. Keeping the person with dementia happy will help them be more emotionally stable so always make sure that you pack yourself with enough sense of humor when dealing with them.
Continue Being Active, Be Secured
A person with dementia tends to wander around, aimlessly and without a purpose. Sometimes it’s because of boredom, side effects of their medication, or even trying to look for someone. Also, they may also be trying to fulfill needs such as hunger, thirst, or use the toilet.
Finding out the reason why they wander is not simple but it can also be minimized if they get regular exercise. This lessens their restless feeling, they become more relaxed, thus minimizing the risk of them wandering on their own. But in order to be safer, make sure to always have them wear an ID with a contact number. It is a standard practice in California to do this to prevent worse scenarios.
All in all, it is impossible to reverse things if a person gets diagnosed with dementia. But that doesn’t mean that life should stop there. What’s important is to cherish each moment, make the most out of the time with the patient, and to remain hopeful for the future. Again, it’s always better to provide home health care for the patient since they will be more at ease. California is a large place but nothing is larger than a life full of memories with loved ones.
And we at Amavi are ready to deliver the best home health in California. We can cover most of the locations in the state, including these key cities.
We are just a message away. Call or email us and we will help you make arrangements and help your loved one properly deal with dementia.