Generally speaking, dementia is a term that’s used to refer to memory loss and changes in thinking that impact daily life. Imagine if you begin to experience changes in thinking and memory, it’s natural to assume that you’d worry and feel anxious.
You may start to act differently, too. Anxiety can cause other behaviors, such as pacing around the house, fidgeting or picking at clothing. It can also cause you to become fearful of people and places that once were familiar.
As a caregiver of a family member or friend with dementia, you can help them feel safe and calm in an increasingly confusing world. To help ease their anxiety:
- Provide comfort by placing your hand on their arm or offering a hug
- Respond to their feelings, not only to what they say
- Remind them that they’re safe and you are there to help
- Invite them to take a walk or do something they enjoy
To keep anxiety at bay or prevent it from getting worse, here are a few suggestions:
- Follow a routine every day
- Be matter of fact and comforting about what is causing their fear
- Pay attention to what makes them fearful and consider alternatives
While anxiety is common for people living with dementia, there are many things you can do to calm and comfort them.
To learn more about anxiety and connect with other caregivers, join us for our Caregiver Coffee October 5, 2022 at 2 p.m. We’ll be discussing the 4 A’s – Anxiety, Agitation, Anger and Aggression
For more information, download our Caregiver Tip Sheet on Anxiety.
The Caregiver Tip Sheet is used with permission from Alzheimer’s Los Angeles.