Do’s and Don’ts of communication with someone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease
After working for 3 years with Alzheimer’s patients I ended up summarizing a list for making better relationships with these groups of people. The first thing I want to highlight is that when you have someone with Alzheimer’s and you realize that they have memory impairments remember that you can’t control their memory loss. However n this condition, your reaction plays an important role and can change the whole situation in a better way.
For people with Alzheimer’s disease, their main disability is memory loss. When you ask them to remember something is like asking a blind person to see. (For example, the most common questions like “Did you take your pills?” or “What did you do today?” are the equivalent of asking them to remember something.)
In this case, having expectations from them to be reasonable or to accept your conclusion is unrealistic. Things will go even more severe if you don’t change your perception of their diagnosis.
People living with Alzheimer’s say and do normal things for someone with memory impairment. Stop and think—these people really do have the disease, and that's Alzheimer's disease. If they were deliberately trying to drive you mad, they'd have a different diagnosis. For this reason, always forgive them… always.
Here are some basic Do’s when it comes to communication with someone with Alzheimer’s disease:
Here are some Don’ts when it comes to communication with someone with Alzheimer’s disease: