Many dementia and Alzheimer’s caregivers often hear the phrase “I want to go home” repeatedly. Even after they have arrived home, they are sometimes confronted with an excessively frustrating predicament in which they keep hearing the same line again and over. While it can be aggravating to handle such a situation, it is challenging to explain to someone with dementia. It can be difficult to use logic to tell them that they have already reached their home or that they cannot access their former home. It will just not make sense to them.
With so many older persons suffering from dementia, there are various ways to approach the problem positively. Find out what are some healthy responses you can give when a dementia patient asks to go home.
Why Do Dementia Patients Ask to Go Home?
Individuals who are experiencing memory conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s are likely to have brain damage of varying levels. As a result, this causes the person to perceive the world differently than a regular person with no cognitive issues. When we hear the expression “I want to go home,” it likely refers to something else. It is typically a plea for comfort rather than a wish to go anywhere. Assisting them to relax and be calm allows you to determine whether this behavior is being caused by discomfort, pain, or a need.
Communicating With Dementia Patients
Oral communication abilities are usually lost in the early stages of their condition, making it difficult for loved ones and caregivers to grasp what they are trying to convey. Examining their facial expressions is one method for determining what their behavior signifies. This might assist you to determine whether they are in discomfort or pain. An easy technique is to have them point to other parts of their body that are hurting. Sometimes, they might want to go home because of unmet needs like hunger, and thirst. It could be useful to make them feel better by lending a helping hand.
Three Steps to Take to Tackle the Situation
While these recommendations can help you handle the situation, you can also come up with new approaches that are more tailored to your dementia patient’s background and preferences.
First and foremost, it is important to validate their emotions by responding calmly and positively. This provides them with a sense of comprehension and support. Reaching out to them should be done in a calm manner since it also helps them relax.
Second, avoid utilizing logic and lengthy explanations towards them since they will react negatively to them. They will be unable to absorb the information and will believe that you are opposing them.
What Happens If They Refuse to Accept
At times, dementia patients may sometimes refuse to let go of the notion of returning home. When this occurs, you will need to experiment with how long it might take you to be able to bring them home without them objecting.
At Rittenhouse Village At Valparaiso, our SHINE® Memory Care program provides long-term care that is tailored to the specific needs of each resident. We ensure you that your loved ones are in safe hands and enjoying the greatest standard of care, whether it is customized care and attention or quality meals.