Seniors suffering from dementia can have difficulty communicating with those they love. This biological brain disorder affects a person's memory along with their ability to think clearly. If your loved one has dementia, you can increase the positivity of your conversations and interactions with them by following these five senior care tips.
5 Tips for Interacting with Loved Ones with Dementia
1. Be Aware of Body Language
Even though dementia can limit a senior’s ability to communicate, they can still react to your body language. Avoid expressing frustration, even when your loved one has a hard time understanding you, and avoid unwanted facial expressions. Smile and make eye contact to reassure them that you’re with them and willing to listen.
2. Laugh With Them
Make your loved one’s day by using lots of humor when it’s appropriate. Laughter is truly the best medicine, and this applies equally to senior care. By brightening their day with a few jokes and entertaining stories, you’ll also give them a reason to look forward to your interactions.
3. Avoid Distractions
Seniors with dementia can be easily distracted. If your loved one lives in a senior care facility, make sure your visits are in quiet areas away from television and radios to keep their attention on you. Many senior care facilities offer quiet rooms that will let you talk to your loved one in a peaceful setting.
4. Speak Clearly
Your senior may not discern slang and figures of speech as quickly as they once did. For best results, speak in a clear and concise tone, and avoid sounding condescending. Continue to treat your loved one with the respect they deserve, and avoid speaking louder to them unless they’re hard of hearing.
A senior’s short-term memory is often affected more seriously than their long-term memory. Help them feel good by bringing up past events and names that will remind them of good times. You will be surprised by the amount of detail your loved one will recall with a little assistance.
If your loved one needs senior care, trust the professionals at Visiting Angels in Toms River, NJ and their nationwide network of home care providers. Staffed with compassionate caregivers that will prioritize your senior’s needs and comfort, they’re available around the clock for meal prep, respite care, and senior home care. Visit their website to learn more about their different care options or call them at (732) 240-1050.