One of the most challenging situations you may start to encounter with an elderly family member who has Alzheimer’s disease is having her start to wander. If you’re aware of your senior’s cognitive changes, it’s time to start developing a plan to deal with wandering. Hopefully you never have to use it.
Make Sure You Have Information Ready if She Wanders Away
If your elderly family member does happen to wander away and you’re not able to find her yourself immediately, you’re going to need more help. That means you need to have a description and at least one or two recent pictures available for people to see. Having that information handy ensures that you can hit the ground running and get more people looking for your senior.
Secure Exits as Well as You Can
Exits, even windows, are the primary way your elderly family member is going to be able to start wandering away. If you make sure that any possible exits are closed and locked, your aging family member is going to be less likely to use those to make a break for the world at large. Finding her inside the house is going to be a lot easier than trying to track her through your neighborhood.
High Tech Solutions Might Be an Option
Technology has some solutions that might be appealing for you and for the rest of your family. GPS locators and personal alarm systems that have GPS sensors in them can be incredibly helpful. These devices usually work with an app that you can access and use to pinpoint your senior’s location. If this type of device is something your senior is likely to take off and leave behind, though, they may not do all that you’re hoping they do.
Get Familiar with What Might Cause Her to Wander
Probably your most powerful tool is going to be learning what might cause your elderly family member to start wandering away. When you understand those triggers and situations, you can help your senior to cope before it becomes a problem. It’s difficult to learn what it might look like when your senior is about to wander, though. Senior care providers can be incredibly helpful to you as you learn what sets your senior off and what helps her to stay calm.
Wandering is a scary situation for you as a caregiver, because you know just how vulnerable your elderly family member is. That’s why having a plan is so very important.
If you or an aging loved one is considering senior care in South Riding, VA, please contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands today. (703) 782-3655.
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