Agitation is among the more difficult effects of dementia, and may be exceedingly frustrating for family members to manage. The key is in taking steps to handle agitation before it’s felt and expressed by the senior loved one, which involves keeping track of what has triggered these feelings in the past, and establishing a home environment in which those stimulants are eliminated or minimized. The following tips can help:
- Designate an area of retreat. When life starts to be overwhelming, having a specially created area where your loved one can go to de-stress often works wonders in restoring calm. This could be a designated room, or simply a comfortable corner with numerous soothing activities conveniently available, quiet music, a soothing scent to enjoy such as lavender or vanilla – whatever supplies peace and relaxation when it comes to the senior.
- Assess the house for upsetting items. Pay attention to exactly what your senior loved one is sensitive to, for example, certain decorations, mirrors (that could give the illusion of somebody else watching), window coverings that do not adequately filter out the darkening evening sky (prompting sundowning issues), etc.
- Minimize noise along with other distractions. Soft carpeting is frequently more comforting for people with dementia than harder floor materials, which can reverberate or accentuate the sound of footsteps. Keep the television or radio at a reduced volume, and set to a station that offers soft music instead of alarming, graphic news presentations. Close windows if outside noises seem to cause annoyance.
- Modify lighting. Ensure that each room the senior may enter is effectively lit, with natural light as much as possible, or higher wattage lightbulbs, carefully adjusting to eliminate any unusual shapes or shadows caused by the light.
- Keep regularly used items readily available. Whatever the senior has a tendency to want to make use of or hold most frequently ought to be put in a visible location where he or she can discover it easily. Attaching labels with words or pictures of what a senior loved one may want to locate in cabinets or even the refrigerator is also an excellent way to help bypass frustration.
Let Responsive Home Care’s expert dementia caregivers help preserve the most calming and peaceful environment for a cherished older adult you love, and provide the skilled, innovative, compassionate care that makes life the best it can be. Just some of the various ways we are able to enhance life for individuals with dementia include:
- Specifically created activities centered on a senior’s particular interests and abilities
- Companionship in order to help older adults stay socially engaged
- Evening respite care allowing family caregivers the chance for a restful night when an older adult is challenged by sundowning
- And a lot more