Communicating with Seniors with Alzheimer’s Disease
Caring for a senior loved one with Alzheimer’s disease can be quite challenging. While sometimes, you see them all alert and oriented; other times they seem irritable and confused. And some days, they may be somewhere in between. Sure, it can be frustrating when they refuse to do what you ask, have trouble following directions, or answer simple questions. But they are family, & you love them both in good times and bad. When it comes to communicating with them, you need to be extra cautious, patient, calm, and empathetic.
Given below are a few things to consider for making communication with your aging loved one easier:
Do not rush the conversation: When you ask them a question, make sure that it’s simple & straightforward. Besides that, give them enough time to think about the answer & formulate a response. Rushing the conversation may confuse and fluster them.
Ask yes/no questions: Seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s disease are more comfortable answering questions that can be answered with a simple yes or no; or when they are given two options to choose from. So, next time, when you want to ask your loved one what they would like for dinner, ask “Would you like pizza or chicken for dinner?” instead of “What would you like for dinner?”
Maintain eye contact: Always look at your loved one when you’re talking to them so that you know you have their attention. Also, try to limit distractions like background noise of a television, radio, or kids playing. This way, they will be able to focus on what you are saying & not on listening to the noise.
Talk to them when they’re most alert: Older adults with Alzheimer’s disease often cycle through periods of alertness & confusion. So, try to have conversations with them when they’re present, aware, & engaged. In case they seem irritated or confused, take a break & try again later.
If you think having a reliable caregiver can make the life of your loved one a little easier, feel free to contact us today! As the leading senior care organization since 1996, we are known for having the best in home caregivers in East Bay.
Call @ (925) 210-0323 to book your free care consultation!