Dementia is a progressive condition that causes cognitive decline as well as mood changes. It’s common for seniors with dementia to experience feelings of depression, anxiety, and apathy. However, family caregivers can use the following tips to manage dementia-related mood swings in a senior loved one.
Know the Triggers
One of the best ways to handle mood swings is to know the cause of each issue. For example, if your loved one experiences changes in mood during mealtimes, find ways to make breakfast, lunch, and dinner more appealing. Try maintaining a schedule for each meal. Having structure could calm your loved one and prevent feelings of confusion. Determine what causes the dementia-related mood swings and develop a plan to address or avoid each trigger.
Symptoms such as agitation, confusion, anger, and frustration are common in elderly people with dementia. Dementia can be challenging for seniors to manage, but they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional dementia care. Chandler seniors can benefit greatly from the Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program designed to promote cognitive health and delay the onset of dementia. CTM is included at no additional charge with any of the in-home care plans provided by Home Care Assistance.
When your parent experiences feelings of sadness, stress, or anger, play his or her favorite artists and bands to calm him or her down and reactivate areas of the brain that have been damaged due to dementia. Keep in mind seniors with dementia may begin to experience feelings of uncertainty, which can increase the risk of anxiety and depression. However, music can tap into the parts of the brain’s salience network that are still functioning normally and boost mental and emotional health.
Provide Plenty of Hydrating Fluids
Dehydration can cause negative behaviors in seniors with dementia. Try calming your loved one down and managing the mood swings by offering something to drink. Hydration can help seniors with dementia concentrate better and sleep well during the night, which could have a positive effect on their moods and cognitive abilities. Your loved one should drink plenty of water and avoid sugary beverages that increase the risk of dehydration.
The cognitive challenges that accompany dementia often leave aging adults unable to manage everyday tasks, which puts their safety and health at risk. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of at-home care Chandler, AZ, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
Deflect and Redirect
Dementia-related mood swings could lead to violent behavior. In these instances, change the subject and help your loved one focus on something positive. This tactic is known as deflecting and redirecting because you’re distracting your loved one’s attention from the issue causing the mood swings and redirecting his or her focus to something that can keep him or her calm. When redirecting, use some form of action. For example, ask if your parent would like something to eat or if he or she needs to go to the bathroom. Use empathy and be reassuring to keep your loved one calm.
Ask Your Loved One for Assistance
Getting your loved one involved in some type of activity or task is the perfect way to manage dementia-related mood swings. When you ask your loved one for assistance, you’re giving him or her a sense of purpose. Your loved one may feel more useful and want to help you with the task, whether it’s washing dishes, taking out the trash, folding laundry, or setting the dinner table. Asking your loved one to help may build his or her confidence and boost his or her emotional health.
Caring for a loved one with dementia is a challenging task for anyone. The responsibilities can sometimes feel overwhelming, but help is available. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Chandler home care service provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. Trust Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate, professional care for your loved one. If your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at 480.448.6215.