Do’s and Don’ts when Dealing with Dementia

Dementia is a severe decline in mental ability, which leads to the inability of a
person to perform everyday activities. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type
of dementia, accounting for 60 to 80 percent of all dementia cases. The inability to
concentrate and problems with short-term memory are some of the main symptoms
of dementia that will usually progress over time. Living with dementia and caring
for someone who’s dealing with the disease can be quite challenging, which is why
it’s essential for you to know all the do’s and don’ts that will help you cope with this

Respect them
It’s essential that you treat the person with dementia with respect. They may have a
fragile sense of self-worth and it’s very important that you are polite in their
vicinity. Always include them in conversations, use their name if you are talking to
them, respect their privacy and try to pay attention to them whenever they are
trying to communicate with you. Respect their feelings and always acknowledge
their presence in the room. You’ll likely become agitated, anxious and angry more
often, but it’s crucial that you calm yourself down instead of taking it out on a loved
one suffering from dementia. 

Don’t argue
People with dementia tend to become aggressive, exhibit hostile speech or actions
because they start to feel confused. Feeling scared and helpless may lead to
aggressive behaviour, so it’s imperative that you don’t argue but try to calm the
situation down. Try to understand how the patient feels and use that to de-escalate
the situation. Don’t be contradictory and avoid correcting them in any way, because
that will only make the circumstances worse. If you failed to understand what they
interpreted, just kindly ask them to repeat it to you, or just try to shift the
conversation the other way. Hallucinations and strange ideas will pop into the
patients’ minds, and it’s important that you reassure them and respond to their
feelings about the things that they see or feel, instead of trying to reason with them.

Help with daily tasks
People with dementia will need plenty of help with their daily tasks, so try to be
there for them as much as possible. However, try to be subtle, because they may
start to feel incompetent and worthless if you start patronizing them, which will the
lead to aggressive behaviour or isolation. On the other hand, many patients won’t
seek help even though they may be aware that they need it, simply because they’re
too proud, afraid or want to maintain control. Taking medications, dressing and
bathing can become an impossible task for them, so offer your help any chance you

If you can’t navigate your everyday duties with your loved one’s needs, consider putting them into a residential facility operated by someone like Care For Family: NDIS Service provider in Sydney that will provide them with great care and comprehensive support with 24hr on-site staff. 

Don’t stress out
Taking care of a person with dementia can take its toll on you, and make your
everyday life a mess. This is why it’s important that you maintain your inner peace
and try to filter out all the stress out of your life. You may be experiencing sleep
deprivation, poor exercise and eating habits and all of that can have a negative
impact on our life and health, so do your best to take care of yourself. You’ll only be
able to take good care of your loved one if you are healthy yourself, so don’t let
stress get the best of you.

People with dementia require a lot of care and protection, but most of all
understanding. Therefore, if you don’t think you can deal with everyday challenges
of a caregiver, look for facilities where your loved ones will feel comfortable and
cared about with great attention.

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