Caregivers Guide:How To Communicate With Dementia Patients

For a caregiver, it is vital to communicate effectively with the care recipient, doctors, and other family members. However, communication with dementia patients is never a cakewalk because dementia impaired cognitive abilities. Dementia sufferers often experience memory loss and confusion. So, if you are a caregiver of a dementia patient and wondering how to communicate, here is the guide to help you in the long run.

Be empathetic

It might seem difficult to imagine yourself in the same position. However, this move will help you to understand how the other person might be feeling. For dementia patients, even a mundane task of communication becomes a daily struggle. This will help you to remain calm and become more empathetic in your caregiving approach.

Always turn off distractions

It is best to have a quiet environment before initiating a conversation with a person suffering from dementia so that the dementia patient can concentrate on the conversation. It must have good lighting and no distractions such as a blaring radio.

Speak in the first language

Consider speaking to the dementia patient in his or her first language. If you don’t know that language, ask a family member to help you in this regard. You can also use a translation tool or an interpretation app on your smartphone or tablet to get some help.

Pay attention to non-verbal cues

Sometimes, non-verbal cues can help you more than spoken words. So pay attention to the same. Focus on acknowledging your care recipient’s feelings to get nonverbal clues. These can help you in ensuring an easy dementia care journey.

Keep communication simple

Try to give only one command at a time. Always maintain eye contact before you start speaking beginning to speak. Keep distractions to a minimum. For example, turn off the TV or radio and stop background conversations while speaking to someone with dementia.

Moreover, the key to effective communication is to agree with their made-up stories or explanations as there is no need that they should be grounded in reality. You must have an abundance of patience and relaxed body language during your conversation with a dementia patient.