How to Manage Common Personality and Behaviour Changes in Clients with Dementia | Caregivers for Seniors – Vancouver

As a caregiver for someone with Dementia, observing behavior problems such as wandering, aggressiveness, hallucinations, or sleeping and eating difficulties can be worrisome. Many behaviour problems are exasperated by a poor environment and/or an inability to deal with stressful situations. By learning how to make changes to the way you care give for someone with Dementia, you can increase their quality of life and learn to diffuse unhealthy behaviours before they escalate any further.

Identify the Causes of the Problematic Behaviour | Caregivers for Seniors Vancouver

One challenge that may arise when caring for someone with Dementia is coping with the troubling behavior and personality changes. What is important to remember is that the difficult behaviour exhibited is not done on purpose. Their sense of reality may be different to yours, but it is still very real to them. As a caregiver for seniors with dementia, there is no easy way to change the person, but you can employ strategies to modify or better accommodate their difficult behaviours. Both the environment you create and the way you communicate with the person can make a huge difference in the outcome of an unhealthy situation. The worrisome behaviour is frequently just a reaction to stress or a frustrated attempt to try to communicate with another person. If you can establish why the person is feeling uncomfortable or exhibiting difficult behaviours, you should be able to resolve the problematic behavior without difficulty. Remember, persons with Dementia respond to your facial expression, tone of voice, and body language far more than the words you use. Use eye contact, a smile, or reassuring touch to convey a compassionate, caring, and soothing message.

5 Ways to Help Identify the Causes of Problematic Behaviours

  • Try to put yourself in your care recipient’s shoes. Look at their body language and think about what they may be feeling and what they might be trying to communicate.
  • Ask yourself what triggered the problematic behaviour? What events lead up to it? Try a different approach to see if the reaction is different.
  • Is the person’s needs being met? Are they feeling hungry, thirsty, or experiencing any pain?
  • How did you react to the problem behavior? Did it make the situation better or worse?

Create a Calm and Safe Environment | Caregivers for Seniors Vancouver

The environment and atmosphere that caregivers create play huge roles in the quality of life of people with Dementia. The following are some tips to help you create a calm and soothing environment that is the least stress free for them as possible:

  • Reduce potential stressors that could cause agitation and disorientation. These include loud or unidentifiable noises, dim lighting, mirrors or other reflecting surfaces.
  • Maintain a calm demeanor at all times. Getting anxious or upset in response to problem behavior can have a negative impact on the person with Dementia. Respond to the emotion being communicated by the behavior, not the behavior itself. Always stay calm and relaxed when in the presence of the person. If you find yourself becoming anxious or losing control, take the time to cool off in another room. Do not let your emotions be visible!
  • Use calming music or play the person’s favorite type of music as a way to relax them when agitated. Music can help soothe their emotions during mealtimes and bath times, making the processes or any changes to routine easier to adjust to.
  • Create a Calming Space. Whether a person with dementia is living in a care home or with the family, it is important that they have a place to go to when they are feeling stressed. Think of the area as a calming space. It does not have to be a different room; it can simply be a comfy chair or couch. But it is a calming place, separate to the racket of the rest of the house, where they can relax and perhaps do relaxing and calming activities, such as painting or reading.

Ace Personnel | Professional Homecare for Seniors & Homecare | Vancouver and Surrey

ACE Personnel is a family owned and operated service founded in 1977 by Diane Anderson (“Mrs. A”). It began as a home based business and has since been devoted to helping the local community with childcare and home care solutions. Mrs. A took great pride in the fact that she was able to help others through elderly care and nanny placements. She took time to get to know her each of her clients and as a result developed lasting relationships with many of them. Contact us today if you are looking for a professional caregiver or homecare for your loved one.