When someone has dementia, sometimes outings aren’t the easiest thing to do. They may insist on staying home, where they are comfortable. However, you might want to take them out to the park or somewhere else fun. If this is the case, there are some things you can do to make outings with someone who has dementia more successful.
Select a Time That Works for Them
If you are going to plan an outing, do it during a time that works for the person with dementia. For instance, if they normally have behaviors in the evening, you may want to plan the outing for the late morning or early afternoon, when they are calmer. This will make the outing go much smoother.
Prepare for the Outing
Talk to your loved one about the outing that you will be going on. Let them know what the plan is. Talk to them a couple of times before the outing to make sure they seem comfortable with going. If they get upset every time that you talk about the outing, you may want to plan on doing something else instead. In addition, you should prepare for the outing in terms of clothing. Make sure your loved one isn’t going to get too hot or too cold. If they get uncomfortable, this could make a mess of the outing and they could have more behaviors.
Keep the Outing Simple
Most people with dementia can’t handle places that are overwhelming. You will want to keep the outing simple. Taking your loved one to a local park, for example, is a good idea. Taking them to a festival where there are hundreds of people is not such a good idea. That might be too overwhelming for them.
Calm and Quiet
You should also make sure the outing is as calm and quiet as possible. People will dementia generally do better when things are calm and quiet. They want things to be easy and simple. By going somewhere that is calm and quiet, you can lessen the behaviors that your loved one might have during the outing.
It might also be best if you plan to take your loved one on an outing in a place that they are familiar with. For instance, if they are familiar with the lake down the road from you, that might be the best place to take them. If they haven’t ever been to the park in the next city, that might be a bad choice for an outing.
These are some of the tips to make an outing with someone who has dementia go smoother. If you feel that you are going to need more help with them on the outing, you may want to bring along a senior care provider to help.
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