When you are caring for your senior mom or dad, and they become diagnosed with dementia, you may find that you need more help communicating, and you may find that you need more help caring for them. Dementia can be managed, but you may need the help of 24-hour home care providers to keep an eye on your elderly loved ones throughout the day and night. You also need their help when it comes to communicating important things with your senior mom or dad.
Here are some useful tips when you are learning and practicing communicating with a senior who has dementia.
Create a Positive Environment
One of the first things you can do for your loved one is to set a good tone. If things seem tense or heated, they may pick up on energy, which can become distorted or perceived wrong. They may think you’re angry when you are not, or they may not listen as well as they could. So, you must take the time to create a good environment where they can sit down with you and focus on what you’re saying especially if it is important. Find a room with good lighting and little distractions to sit and talk to them. Ensure they are comfortable and facing you when you speak. This will help them hear you, see you, and be in a positive mood.
Get Their Undivided Attention
Often, we get used to looking at our phones, talking with the TV on, or even turning music on for background noise. There is a time and place for everything. Of course, if your senior loved one likes movies, they should watch them. Unfortunately, that is not the right time to share information or talk with them. They will be distracted, and they will not remember anything you’ve told them. This is the same for 24-hour home care. Whoever is trying to communicate with the senior should ensure they have a senior’s undivided attention and are talking one-on-one with them. This will also keep down any confusion for your loved one.
Be Patient With Your Loved One
Even though you are talking to your loved one and know they have understood what you are talking about, it may take them several minutes to reply. You need to be patient when they respond and never talk to them. Allow them time to comprehend what you’ve said, and allow them to speak as slowly as they need. Being a caregiver, whether it is professional or family, means you need to always have patience when working with an elderly person.
Respond With Care and Compassion
Sometimes, your loved one may feel confused even if you tell them what to expect and what is happening. The most important thing to remember is never to get angry and respond with care and compassion. Allow them to feel frustrated, but assure them they are safe and okay, and it’s okay to be confused sometimes. You are there to support them and guide them, and they have proper care from 24-hour home care to rely on, too. Never get mad at them because this is a disease they cannot control.