How to Communicate With a Loved One With Dementia

It’s not easy watching a loved one live with dementia. Every day brings a new challenge and it can be hard to know how to tackle conversations and situations with ease.


That’s why good communication is essential. It won’t always be easy to understand your loved one’s emotions and needs, so it’s important that you’re supportive and always there for them, no matter what. 


Taking the time to do this can help your loved ones live a higher quality of life. 


Thankfully if you have a loved one with dementia, there are ways you can effectively improve your communication to meet their needs.


Here are some tips and strategies to keep in mind:

Remove distractions


When you’re spending time with your loved one, you’ll want to do your best to remove all distractions. Distractions make it hard for individuals with dementia to focus and cause unwanted misunderstandings during your conversations. 


When you’re meeting with them, try to find a quiet space. Turn off the radio, the tv, or any music that’s playing in other rooms. Make sure your focus is them and only them to ensure you create a safe space. 

Introduce yourself and others


Taking the time to introduce yourself and the people you’re with will help keep your loved one with dementia feel more grounded during the conversation. It reminds them of the present moment and helps them understand the situation better. 


Even if you’re a close relative, like a daughter or a son, make sure you introduce yourself. Start your conversation by saying, “Hi Dad, It’s Chris, your son.” This simple step can make all the difference.

Prioritize nonverbal communication


Nonverbal communication is more powerful than you think. When it comes to communicating with loved ones with dementia, it can make all the difference during a conversation. We recommend always:


  • Be mindful of your facial expressions 
  • Use your hands to tell a story
  • Hold their hand 
  • Smile often
  • Maintain eye contact 

Keep questions simple


Some questions can be too overwhelming for the moment. They provide too many options: and this can be too much for your loved one to answer at the moment. 


When you’re addressing a situation or need to ask a question, try your best to keep things simple and narrow down the possible options. 


For example, if you’re asking them where they want to go to eat, rather than asking them the type of food, ask them which restaurant option they would prefer. Be specific and keep it simple.

Get creative


Communication is more than just the words you say. When sitting down with your loved one, we recommend looking for ways to get creative during your conversations. 


One of the best ways to do this is by looking for ways to connect with all six senses: sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell. 


You can do this by:

  • Bring old photos to share with them
  • Buying them flowers
  • Sing a song
  • Cook their favorite meal

Be patient


It’s not going to always be easy. You’ll need to be patient with your loved one and take every conversation one step at a time. Don’t rush things. Keep things straightforward, and do your best to make them as comfortable as possible. 


There will be times when your loved one struggles with remembering something or saying a particular word. Instead of jumping in or correcting them, make sure you take your time and ease into every situation. 

Be mindful of the situation


Unfortunately, there’s no cure for dementia. This disease will always make understanding and communicating difficult for your loved one. With you by their side: they’ll have all the support they need. 


Approach every conversation with them with a smile. Always try to be mindful of what they’re going through. Celebrate your time with them, support their progress, and always be there to empower your loved ones every step of the way.

How senior care companions can help


At Senior Care Companions, we understand it’s not always easy to communicate with your loved ones like you used to. The daily struggles and difficulties your loved one is going through is not easy, and they need a safe and comfortable environment where they can enjoy life amidst the confusion. 


Our specialists are here to help you every step of the way and provide them with the care you need to thrive. We’re a caring community that’s just as invested in your loved one’s health as you are, and we’re here to help. 

To learn more about our dementia and Alzheimer’s care today: contact us today.

Seniors need attention and love during the holidays, just like everyone else. Unfortunately, some people forget to visit their loved ones during the busiest times of the year. 

Finding ways to take care of seniors during the holidays is extremely important. Doing so involves helping them with their physical, mental, and emotional needs. Let’s look into the ways you can take care of seniors during the holiday season.

Hire a Service

Some seniors might not be able to help themselves with different tasks such as:

  • Mobility to go places
  • Remembering important details and schedules
  • Assistance with motor skills

Whatever you may need, we here at Senior Care Companions can help. We offer various services to help seniors each day. You can find assistants to help them 24/7, or just a few hours of the day.


While you should help seniors when you can, you may need professional help. After all, you can’t be at their sides 24/7, so see if you can find a reliable service to look after them.

Plan Fun Activities

Seniors can face boredom during the holidays, especially if they don’t have people to spend time with them. Coming up with fun activities you can do with one another is important to their mental and emotional wellbeing. Potential activities include:

  • Sit down and play board games together
  • Enjoy holiday activities like eating or watching movies
  • Go for a walk through the park

Focus your attention on letting them have fun. Doing so can help you take care of them emotionally and mentally. For example, they could feel happy after the activities or thankful you thought of them.

Seniors can potentially become lonely and depressed during the holidays, so take the time to plan fun activities for them. Doing so can help them overcome the mundane and boring moments in their lives.

Prepare Them Ahead of Time

Some seniors may like to stick with their schedules. If you know seniors like this, you should prepare them before any activities. Some seniors may have health problems, so make sure you accommodate them. 

You can do this in multiple ways such as:

  • Ensure they have a way to safely reach the areas if they have to use wheelchairs
  • Give them specific food if they have dietary restrictions
  • Show them pictures of who they’ll see at the event if they suffer from memory loss

You don’t want to worry them, so make sure you take some time to talk and prepare. This can help them understand the plan and feel comfortable during the activity.

Visit Them Regularly

Often people forget to help seniors with their mental and emotional health during the holidays. If you want to help them during the holidays, just visiting them is an easy way to make their day.

Visiting seniors can help them out in many ways:

  • Allows them to talk with someone
  • Shows them others care about their well-being
  • Help them with tasks or anything else they need

When you visit a senior, you can help them feel happy. You can also help them avoid feelings of loneliness or boredom if they have to live away from home. Even if you have seniors in your life who live on their own, you should visit them during the holidays.

Seniors recognize the time you take to visit them, so they’ll appreciate your efforts.

Ask Them What They Want

Sometimes, people try to make decisions for seniors, so you should communicate when possible. If you communicate with them, you can avoid some problems.

  • Ensure they do something they like and avoid boredom
  • Meet their personal needs and keep them safe
  • Learn more about them and their interests

These points can help you find an activity that will make the seniors happy. You don’t want to drag them to an activity they don’t like, so you need to communicate with them. That way, you can find something you’ll both enjoy. 


Some people forget to remember each senior as a person. Make sure you show these seniors you care by asking them what they want. As you do so, you can form stronger relationships with them. 

Final Comments

The holidays give you a great opportunity to show your love to the seniors in your life. Whether you want to help relatives in your family or the local seniors, you can make the holidays better for them.

If you want to help these seniors out, try out the ideas above. If you need assistance in taking care of the seniors in your life, reach out to Senior Care Companions.

Have any Questions? Just give us a call, we would love to help in any way.

“Quality Care You Can Trust – Since 2004”

Senior Care Companions
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