10 Things to Do When an Alzheimer’s Patient Says They Want to Go Home
It’s not uncommon for people with Alzheimer’s disease to express a desire to go “home.” It can be difficult to understand whether “home” to them is a beloved childhood house, a time from their past life, or a place among the people they used to know. It’s unlikely that your loved one can ever return to this place, but that doesn’t mean caregivers can’t help them feel more comfortable. Here are 10 things you can do when your loved one says they’d like to go home.
10. Let Them Know You’re Listening
Let your loved one know that you understand what they’re saying and that you empathize with how they’re feeling. Speak to them in a calm tone, which they may pick up on. It may even lead to them calming down as well.
9. Validate Their Feelings
Agree with what your loved one tells you so they know that their feelings are acknowledged and important. This might include you telling them that, “Yes, we can go home,” or praising their ideas and suggesting, “Maybe we could try that sometime.”
8. Distract With Another Fun Activity
After validating what they have to say, move seamlessly onto something else in order to redirect their attention and try to distract them with another activity. For instance, you might say, “We’ll go home, but let’s first clean up this room,” or “Let’s go for a walk.” A fun activity can keep them occupied and not thinking about home.
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