How You Can Build A Meaningful Relationship With A Loved One Who Has Dementia Part 2
A good example is that if the patient loves animals. You can try to plan visits that allow the patient to interact with pets such as dogs or cats. Your loved one may also like reading but can no longer read. Maybe you could read to them or if they can’t comprehend that you can bring in things that they may enjoy such as things that are related to what they used to do or a hobby that they had. Nancy Kriseman suggests creating theme collections that you can easily grab as you go off for a visit.
One such client adored baseball, especially the Detroit Tigers. So the patient’s son made a “baseball box” that had a ball and a glove as well as baseball cards. They also had a Tigers cap and a Tigers pennant and other forms of memorabilia that the patient could touch and look at. While the man could no longer remember names of the players, he would light up when he held the baseball or smelled the leather glove. Sometimes, the man’s son would bring in videos of the old games and they would watch them as if they were in real time. They would also eat foil-wrapped hot dogs and snack on peanuts.
Connecting with a Dementia patient doesn’t have to be done with words. There are many ways to build up a meaningful connection.
consider other ways that you can build up a connection.
Invite others and take the focus off of just the two of you. It can help the person to reach out to new friends.
Consider age-appropriate crafts. Maybe they would like to do some coloring in an adult color book. Leave the children’s crafts at home and find more adult-like ways to connect.
Watch how your mood can impact your loved one. If you’re feeling down, they will hone in on this and it will affect you.
Try different stimuli. Consider sight, smell, taste and even touch. All of these can greatly enhance the connection.
Visit when the patient is at his or her best. If they’re in an assisted living center ask the staff how they’re doing before you go in. Everyone has an off day now and again. It can be upsetting to know that the connection has to change.
It takes great courage on your part to strive for a connection and focus on how to connect with them regardless of the type of day that they are having or the mood that you’re in.
Should you have a loved one that needs the proper attention, or have any questions about care, we at Assisting Hands are here to help; call or contact us immediately to help your loved ones today. missed the first issue of this article? click here!
Latest posts by garrettl (see all)
- Helpful Ideas For Being A Great Houston Caregiver - June 14, 2019
- Good Questions To Ask A Potential Caregiver In Houston - June 11, 2019
- Houston Caregiving Tips For Keeping Aging Parents At Home - May 20, 2019