If your elderly loved one has dementia, you will likely encounter behavior problems. However, this is not the only challenge of being a family caregiver to someone with dementia. People with dementia also have trouble with conversations. The good news is there are some tips for handling conversations with someone who has this disease. If you want to get the most out of your in-person or online conversations with your elderly loved one, keep reading to find tips that will help.
Since there are likely going to be difficulties in conversations with your elderly loved one if they have dementia, it is best to minimize distractions ahead of time. For example, it wouldn’t be a good idea to have a long conversation with your elderly loved one in a grocery store. There are far too many things that could distract them. This could lead to behavior issues, misunderstandings, other problems. If you can minimize distractions ahead of time, your elderly loved one will be able to better focus on what you are saying. They will be able to respond better, as well.
Talk at Eye Level
There are many people with dementia who get overwhelmed when people are talking over the top of them or behind them. If this is something that aggravates your elderly loved one, you should try talking to them at their eye level. If you are making eye contact with your loved one, they are also going to be able to read your feelings much better, too. This is helpful since people with moderate dementia often can’t fully understand what is being said. However, when they can see a person’s emotions and body language, they can better understand. If you aren’t sure how to do this, you can watch one of your elderly loved one’s caregivers. They have been trained on how to do this.
Speaking in a Reassuring Voice
There are many tips that can allow you to speak in a more reassuring voice. The one thing to remember is to talk slowly, calmly, and confidently. The more reassuring you are when speaking to your elderly loved one, the more they will mimic your behaviors and emotions. This is helpful since many people with dementia often get overwhelmed. They are often confused about what is going on. If you can reassure your elderly loved one of what is happening or what needs to be done, that can greatly improve your communications with them. It can greatly improve their behaviors, as well.
These are some of the tips for handling conversations with someone who has dementia. If you aren’t quite sure how to communicate with your elderly loved one after they get a dementia diagnosis, hiring caregivers can help. After watching the caregivers interact with your elderly loved one, you can have a better idea of how to converse with them, too.
If you or someone you know needs help with a Caregiver in East Grand Rapids, MI, contact Gauthier Family Home Care. We provide quality and affordable home care services in our community. Call us at (616) 258-2300 for more information.
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