After spending considerable time in social distancing and isolation, this summer may lead you even more than usual to want to journey to visit family, or to just encounter a change of scenery and a few pleasant activities. And if you provide care for a member of your family with Alzheimer’s or dementia, having a senior loved one accompany you may be a viable option, after a little preplanning.
These travel safety tips, from the professional dementia care team at Anthem Home Care, are a great place to begin.
- Take your time. Pack lots of extra time into your schedule to allow you to move at a pace that is most comfortable for the senior, in order to provide adequate downtime when you reach your destination to allow him or her to relax and get used to the change.
- Bring paperwork. In the event that you do not already have a document in place that lists each of your loved one’s medications, doctor and emergency contact info, allergies, etc., now is time for you to create one, and bring a copy with you.
- Include identification. Ensure that your loved one wears an ID bracelet, or that his or her clothing, shoes, luggage, etc. are marked clearly with his or her name and an emergency contact number. A list of the older adult’s health issues should be tucked into his / her wallet as well.
- Stay close to home. It’s best for someone with dementia to limit travel time to ideally no more than 4 hours. Should your journey require a lengthier time in transit, bring along another trustworthy family member, or a professional caregiver from Anthem Home Care, to help you.
- Aim for familiarity. Unfamiliar settings are often particularly unsettling for a senior with Alzheimer’s. Bringing along items from home that bring comfort, such as his / her bed quilt, pajamas, pillow, etc. often helps. Keeping a schedule that’s close to the senior’s regular routine is also an excellent idea, such as keeping set times for meals and bed.
- Be reasonable. Match your expectations to the reality of the older adult’s current stage of the disease. If she or he is experiencing hallucinations, aggressive behavior, wandering, and extreme confusion, it is perhaps advisable to keep the senior loved one at home.
Anthem Home Care, a provider of top-rated dementia care in Portland and the surrounding areas, is happy to provide a highly skilled professional respite caregiver to help you to travel while your senior loved one remains safe at home, or even provide accompaniment for the senior so you can enjoy some time away while knowing his or her needs will be fully met away from home.
Contact us at 361-643-2323 and let us help both you and the senior you love with Alzheimer’s to enjoy new and rewarding experiences this summer. Reach out to us today to learn more about our dementia care in Portland and the surrounding communities.