Dementia can be scary for both the person living with it and their loved ones. For those who have never experienced dementia, knowing how to interact with someone who has it can be challenging. It’s important, though, as taking care of your loved one will likely fall on your shoulders at some point. One way you can help them cope with this illness is by planning for travel. As a caregiver, you might wonder how to ensure your loved ones with dementia travel safely. Here are some travel tips for dementia:
Talk To Your Loved One About Traveling
Talking to your loved one about traveling is a crucial step to take. It’s essential to explain the process in an informative, engaging way but also sensitive and respectful of their feelings. Here are some tips for talking with them:
- Be honest about your expectations and plans for trip-including any potential changes in routine, such as meals or sleeping arrangements, and how these may affect you both.
- Try not to overwhelm them with too many details at once; if they ask questions later on, return to those topics instead of repeating yourself constantly throughout each conversation until something else happens (like getting distracted by another person).
- If possible, try using visual aids like maps or diagrams so that even if they don’t remember everything said during this time period afterward (which might happen due to dementia symptoms), they’ll still be able to reference these materials later on when needed again.
Keep A Journal With All Your Loved One’s Medications Listed
Keeping a journal with all your loved one’s medications listed is an important step when planning travel. This will help you track what medications were taken and when which may be especially useful if you’re traveling with multiple medications or if your loved one has difficulty remembering what they’ve taken.
The journal can also help you stay organized when traveling with multiple types of medical equipment, such as oxygen tanks, nebulizers (devices that deliver medication through the nose), feeding tubes, etc., and any vitamins or supplements they might need the road.
Get Ready For The Unexpected
It’s essential to be prepared for anything. If your loved one has dementia and is traveling in a car, you should ensure they are wearing a seatbelt at all times, even if they don’t want to. You can explain this by saying, “You need to wear this because it will keep you safe.”
If there are any unexpected roadblocks or delays along the way (which there often are), try not to get frustrated when your loved one asks why something isn’t working as it should or why we’re going so slow. Instead, try being patient with them as best as possible because sometimes, just being able to talk through things can help them feel better about what’s happening around them at that time.