When it comes to dementia, the common symptoms include anger, confusion and even depression. As a result of the dementia, sometimes these symptoms turn the patient into someone that is not like their usual self, making this disease one that is very challenging to cope with. However, by learning the proper tips and mechanisms, one can manage them better.
Common Symptoms and Behavioral traits:
Irritability is something that is common when a person has Alzheimer’s or another strain of dementia. There may not even be something that necessarily provokes the person to act this way, yet they may go in and out of confusion which can disorient them.
Here are the common behavioral traits and actions from someone with Dementia:
The person may be lashing out unexpectedly, or overall just being mean, stubborn and angry. Sometimes they may say things like “No, I don’t want to eat that!” or “I don’t want to shower!”. This type of aggression, however, may lead to physical violence so it is important to know how to cope with it.
At times, the person may feel confused and not sure of where they are physically located. They may sometimes say things like “Where are we?”, “Who are you?”, “I am not at home.” and/or other phrases that show a state of confusion. Additionally, they may feel paranoid and have frequent mood changes as a result of being confused.
There may be times when the person with dementia thinks something was done to them poorly and they may make false accusations about it. Phrases like “You stole my purse!” or anything of that similar manner may reflect dementia. Other examples may include not calculating money correctly, hoarding, or even just repeating statements even after they were done.
Tips and Coping mechanisms for dealing with difficult behaviors
Managing dementia may be challenging, but not impossible. The ultimate truth to know when taking care of someone with dementia is that words carry a significant impact. With our words, it may escalate and lead to many unpleasant consequences as well as peaceful resolutions when it comes to dementia behavior.
We know it’s hard to cope with this on your own, if you struggle, our home health care service might be just a right solution for you.
#1. How to handle aggression
Aggression often derives from inner fear. Those with dementia are often very afraid and so they let out their fears by showing aggression, sometimes even through violence.
DO: try to figure out what is making them aggravated. By trying to figure out the reason, you can address the root of the problem directly. Perhaps they are in pain, or something might have triggered them to react this way? Whatever it is, try to ease that initial problem before as it may escalate to something worse. Sometimes even walking away may be the best option to give the person some space.
DON’T: engage in an argument with them or make them more aggressive. Restraining the person should not be done unless you are left with no choice and they are hurting you or themselves.
#2. How to manage confusion
DO: Give clear and simple explanations. Sometimes photos help by reassuring some facts and explaining situations. Be calm and supportive. Provide some reminders through alarms, calendar, post-it notes and more.
DON’T: Make a long and complicated explanation. Simple and cohesive explanations make the person feel safe.
#3. How to manage misjudgment
Accusations of stealing, hoarding or forgetting to do certain things tasks fall under misjudgment.
DO: note their actions and offer help subtlety. Breakdown a complicated task into fewer simpler tasks.
DON’T: Humiliate or blatantly question the person’s actions, this may increase their fears and possible aggression.
Dementia behaviors are difficult to deal with yet it is possible to manage. If you are looking for more tips on how to care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or any other form of dementia, don’t hesitate to seek out help.