Caregiving Monday: It’s Not Personal

When dealing with Dementia/Alzheimer’s patients we get a variety of responses.

One moment the resident may be the sweetest and calmest person, and a moment later s/he may be cussing you out.

This is not personal.  This is not a personal attack on the second party in any way.missing puzzle

The important thing to remember is this is the disease.

So how do you respond?

  • First and foremost, with love—stay calm and answer in a calm, loving manner
  • Step away if the stress of the moment becomes too much
  • Do not take it personally
  • Observe the environment—is there something that may be setting the individual off? Knowing the person really helps to understand the triggers.  Does noise irritate the person, was there a bad night, is there a person that sets the person off, etc.
  • Soothe the individual. I have found that music is always a wonderful healer, but sometimes you have to try different techniques to find the right one for that individual
  • Check with your physician to discuss medications and the effects on the resident
  • Take away any triggers—if possible

Above all, remember this is the frustration and disease speaking and not your loved one.

How do you deal with outbursts?