Alzheimer’s can cause seniors to become restless, irritated, and aggressive, which can be difficult for family caregivers to manage. However, there are ways to reduce the risk of behaviors such as these if you know how to approach them properly. Here are a few tips on how to redirect your senior loved one if he or she is displaying undesirable behaviors related to Alzheimer’s disease.
Be Calm & Confident
It’s easy to become upset or embarrassed when a loved one with Alzheimer’s engages in inappropriate behavior. An angry, forceful tone or aggressive body language can put your loved one on the defensive and escalate the situation. A warm smile, gentle touch, and eye contact may be much more effective in leading to the desired behavior. You can even physically redirect your loved one by offering an outstretched hand or placing an arm around his or her shoulder.
Inappropriate behavior is often the result of some type of physical or emotional stress. For example, your loved one may be hungry or bored, or he or she may need to go to the bathroom. Asking a few gentle questions can help you find the cause of the distress so it can be addressed. Once the underlying stressor is resolved, the inappropriate behavior may go away.
The cognitive challenges that accompany Alzheimer’s often leave aging adults unable to manage everyday tasks, which puts their safety and health at risk. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
Don’t Try to Reason
Seniors with Alzheimer’s are unable to follow logic. If you attempt to reason with your loved one, he or she will most likely retreat and become defensive. Instead of trying to correct a delusional belief, be empathetic and reassuring. For example, if your loved one thinks there are little men under the bed, let him or her know you understand how that would be upsetting and ask why he or she thinks the little men are there. This can provide insight as to what’s really worrying your loved one so you can address the underlying issue.
Alzheimer’s can be challenging for seniors to manage without assistance, and it can be just as challenging for families who don’t have experience in providing Alzheimer’s care. Tucson Home Care Assistance provides Alzheimer’s care seniors and their families can depend on. Our proprietary Cognitive Therapeutics Method was designed to help seniors with Alzheimer’s and other memory-related conditions live happier and healthier lives.
Use Bridge Phrases
Seniors with Alzheimer’s can get stuck in the rut of asking a particular question over and over. Using a phrase that’s a slight change from the topic can engage your loved one in a new activity. For example, if your loved one keeps asking if the mail has come, you can say that it hasn’t and then ask him or her to help you with a diversional activity until the mail arrives.
Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s is a challenging task for anyone. The responsibilities can sometimes feel overwhelming, but help is available. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Tucson home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. For more information about our flexible, customizable home care plans, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (520) 276-6555.