Dementia is a loss of brain function that takes place with certain diseases. It can affect memory, thinking, language, judgment, and behavior.
If you are in the midst of a situation that may touch on dementia, perhaps some of the following tips may help.
How to deal with symptoms of dementia
- People with dementia cannot multi-task. Everything should be one step at a time.
- If a person becomes hostile or stubborn, accept that these behaviors are beyond his ability to control.
- In an uncomfortable situation, try to remove the person to another area. Often she will have a short memory and will forget the problem quickly.
- Be patient when waiting for a response. Try to ensure that the surroundings of the person are as peaceful as possible. Fewer people, less noise.
- Have the person follow familiar routines. Write instructions. Placing labels on drawers and doors saying “silverware,” “pajamas,” and “towels” may help.
- Be clear when explaining something. Avoid giving details.
- Avoid responding to a confused person by expressing frustration and anger. This only makes things worse.
- Always speak calmly, move slowly, and take everything one step at a time.
- Never approach a confused person from behind.
- Avoid reasoning or arguing with a confused person.
- Most confused people appreciate a gentle touch or having their hand held.
- Try to keep strong mentally and physically to reduce your stress.
- Reach out if you need help. For example, the Alzheimer’s Association.
If you are struggling with your own symptoms or that of a loved one, read more about coping and support from Mayo Clinic.