Prevent Dementia Patients from Wandering

If you know someone with dementia, you should also know about the possibility of them wandering away from home.  Wandering puts a disoriented elderly person at great risk when away from the safe haven of their familiar surroundings.  Here are some ways you can  prevent an elderly loved one from wandering off and getting lost.

10 Ways to Prevent Wandering 

Here are some proven tactics that help prevent a loved one from wandering away:

  • make sure property gates are secured – if they can’t get out of the gate, they will at least remain on the premises
  • go with them when they want to go out somewhere – you can help them dress, and walk with them wherever they wanted to go
  • contact numbers – make sure that all the people they might normally contact in an emergency are stored on their cellphones, and make sure they’re in the habit of carrying their cellphone
  • Medic Alert – consider using a safe return program such as Medic Alert, which will store their name and address, as well as any important medical information
  • inform neighbors – and local shopkeepers of your loved one’s condition, so they can be on the lookout for them
  • stow coats and keys away – this should reduce the frequency of any spontaneous desires to take a walk
  • sundowning – if your parent sometimes gets restless late in the day, suggest a walk you can take together, to cut down on that wandering urge
  • technology – there is a lot of technology options you can take advantage of, for instance GPS tracking, door alarms, and pressure mats
  • encourage hobbies – if your loved one has a hobby they enjoy, they’ll be less likely to want to wander off
  • reduce disorientation – if your parent becomes disoriented at home, you may want to post little signs or labels around the house to keep them on track.
Expert Care for Seniors with Dementia
Of course, one of the best ways to ensure your elderly loved one doesn’t wander off is to arrange for in-home care. At Gentle Shepherd Home Care, we are often called to provide care for elderly patients suffering from dementia, and we know all the warning signs of wanderlust. We can ensure your loved one isn’t harmed by wandering off somewhere and becoming disoriented in a strange environment. Contact us today, so we can arrange for an initial consultation that will make your loved one comfortable about our in-home services.
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