There are an estimated 47.5 million people currently living with dementia across the world, and that figure is unfortunately expected to rise to 75.6 million people by 2030. Dementia will more than likely touch the lives of everyone at some stage. Therefore, people living with the debilitating condition need as much help as possible, which is why we are providing five ways to support a person with dementia.
- Create a Dementia-Friendly Environment
Sadly, dementia can significantly affect a person’s perception and vision, which means they are more vulnerable to accident or injury. For example, swirling carpet prints may look like snakes, while shiny floors may appear slippery. Therefore, it can help to create a stable, dementia-friendly environment that will allow a person to feel safe and secure. You can also label devices to explain how they work, such as televisions or kettles.
- Show Patience
The best thing you can do for a person living with dementia is to show them both patience and respect. It can be easy for a person to become confused or frightened, so you must show understanding and avoid displaying any signs of frustration or anger. This means providing a space for a person to speak and comforting them when they feel stressed or anxious.
Many people living with dementia often experience short-term memory loss; however, their long-term memories can remain intact. It is, therefore, important to reminisce about old stories that will provide them with plenty of happy memories, which is sure to make them smile and could even help them to gain back their identity.
Whether you are a loved one or a carer, ask them questions about their past, such as where they grew up, their favourite memories and any holidays they have experienced. You can guarantee they will have plenty of stories to share.
- Report Abuse
It is important to remember that people living with dementia might be unable to speak up for themselves, especially in the advanced stages of dementia. Unfortunately, there are cases of carers or even loved ones abusing a person living with the condition – which could fall under physical, mental and financial abuse. If you believe someone is a victim of elderly abuse, we encourage you to raise the issue as soon as possible. Garcia Law, an elderly abuse attorney Los Angeles, is dedicated to protecting vulnerable senior citizens from physical and emotional harm, as well as financial exploitation.
- Don’t Finish Their Sentences
Living with dementia can cause much frustration for the person experiencing the condition. While you might want to help a person to finish their sentence or remember an important fact, it is important to give them the space to fill in the gaps themselves. Instead, try to prompt their memory over telling them the answer.
Dementia can be incredibly overwhelming for both the person living with the disease and the caregiver. However, it is important to provide the environment, patience, understanding and support to improve their quality of life.