Help a Loved One with Dementia Adjust to a New Caregiver

By Annette Bratcher, 12:14 am on

Caring for a senior with dementia often requires the assistance of caregivers who can tend to your loved one’s needs in your absence. However, dementia symptoms can make the transition to a new caregiver challenging for seniors who may be confused by having a new person brought into their home. Fortunately, you can ease the transition! The following are simple tips that will help your loved one adjust to their new caregiver while allowing them to benefit from quality care.

  • Keep the first few visits brief. If your elderly loved one is resistant to the idea of a new caregiver, it may be best to limit their interaction during the first few visits. Explain to your loved one that a friend will be coming to visit for a few minutes to help out with chores around the house. Then, allow your loved one to gradually become accustomed to the caregiver’s presence. Over time, these visits for hourly home care can be extended to the point where your loved one is comfortable being left alone with their new caregiver.
  • Minimize changes in the routine. Seniors coping with dementia depend upon routines to help them feel in control of their environment. When possible, avoid making any significant changes in your loved one’s routine while they transition to a new dementia caregiver. Additionally, provide the new caregiver with an overview of your loved one’s daily schedule. When doing so, make sure to include small details that can enhance the caregiving experience such as using your loved one’s preferred soap when bathing or how to prepare their favorite meal.
  • Send positive signals. As the primary caregiver, it is normal to feel guilty or worried when leaving your loved one in the care of someone new. However, your loved one depends upon you for clues as to how they should respond to a new situation. When introducing the new caregiver, be sure that you send out positive signals that will make your loved one feel secure with the new arrangements. Be sure to smile and stay relaxed while making the introductions. Then, greet your loved one and their caregiver warmly when you return so the next interaction will go smoothly.

Helping a loved one with dementia adjust to a new caregiver may take some time, but it is possible to smooth the transition. By taking the time to provide a gradual introduction, you will be able to get the respite you need while knowing your loved one is being cared for by a professional and compassionate caregiver. Looking for a quality dementia caregiver in Denton County? Contact Home Care Assistance today at 972-468-6010 and learn about our hourly and twenty four hour dementia care plans and schedule a complimentary in-home consultation.