Going out with a loved one who is living with advanced dementia can be both rewarding and incredibly challenging. It is important for family caregivers to plan ahead to ensure that their outing runs as smoothly as possible. In this blog post, David Skriloff discusses the different steps involved in preparing for an outing with a person living with advanced dementia, from deciding what activities you will do together to adjusting your expectations of the situation. Caregivers needn’t be overwhelmed by the task of taking their loved one out; by carefully considering each part of the preparation process, we hope to make it easier for those providing care to embark on successful and meaningful outings together.
Preparing For An Outing With A Loved One With Advanced Dementia: By David Skriloff
1. Adapt the Environment: According to David Skriloff, to prepare for an outing with a loved one who has advanced dementia, first, make sure to adapt to the environment as much as possible. This includes both the actual location you will be visiting and any additional preparations that might need to be made. In terms of the location, try to choose somewhere familiar or quiet in order to reduce any potential distractions or agitation that your loved one may experience. Additionally, look into any special accommodations that may need to be made, such as lowered chairs or extra handrails in public places.
2. Plan Ahead: It is also important that you plan ahead for the outing by having an itinerary that can easily be changed if needed. Make sure to discuss this plan with the person who is living with dementia and be aware that their needs may change from moment to moment. Additionally, make sure to bring along any items or activities that might help pass the time or provide comfort. For example, bringing a favorite food item or a special piece of music can be helpful in keeping them engaged and happy during the outing.
3. Focus on Comfort: Above all else, focus on providing comfort for your loved one while out in public. This includes ensuring that they are physically comfortable by bringing items such as extra layers of clothing if needed and offering support in terms of navigating any unfamiliar places they encounter. It also involves being emotionally supportive; this means speaking in soothing tones, avoiding loud noises or sudden movements, and making sure to keep conversations short and sweet.
4. Be Flexible: Finally, it is important, as per David Skriloff, to be flexible in responding to your loved one’s needs while out on the outing. As already mentioned, their needs may change from moment to moment, so being able to adapt quickly is key. This includes understanding that they may suddenly become tired or agitated and having a plan in place for how you would deal with those situations, as well as any other potential issues. Being prepared for any changes will help ensure that the outing ends up being enjoyable rather than stressful for both of you.
David Skriloff’s Concluding Thoughts
By following these four tips by David Skriloff, preparing for an outing with a loved one who has advanced dementia can be done with ease and efficiency. Taking the time to plan ahead and being prepared for any potential changes will help make the outing a success. Additionally, by focusing on providing comfort and being flexible with their needs, you can ensure that they have an enjoyable experience while out in public. With these tips, outings can be something that both of you look forward to and cherish.