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January 27, 2023

Rock Creek Senior Living Discusses How to Have Meaningful Visits With Someone Living With Dementia

Category: Dementia Resources

Author: Hannah Dannewitz, Memory Care Director

Dementia is an umbrella term for loss of memory and other thinking abilities severe enough to interfere with daily life. When someone is diagnosed with dementia, at least two parts of the brain are dying. Dementia is progressive, chronic, and terminal, which creates many challenges.  Relationships continue to be vital to families, regardless of a dementia diagnosis. At Rock Creek Senior Living we have some ideas and suggestions to help you have successful visits with your loved ones.

Preparing for a visit gives a greater chance of success for the visitor and the person living with dementia. We cannot control how the visit will go but we can control our attitude and perspective going into the visit. Family members can make the time more pleasant by not asking their loved ones to remember. Instead, reminisce on pleasant memories and bring items to spark memories or conversation.

People living with dementia do well with routine schedules. There may be times that are better to visit than others. Talk to your Memory Care Director to find out the most successful time of day for your loved one.

When it’s time to end your visit, never say goodbye. There is no need for a big show when leaving. It is perfectly fine to make an exit or make an excuse for leaving. It is important, however, to avoid saying phrases like “I’m going home.”

We hope this information has given you some fresh tips and ideas for visiting someone living with dementia. Quality connections are essential for the person living with the disease, as well as yourself. If your visit still doesn’t go well, don’t beat yourself up. Every day is a new day. Be patient and you will figure out what works best. Giving your time to someone living with dementia is the best gift possible. 

Rock Creek Senior Living in Ankeny, IA offers senior villas, independent senior apartments, assisted living, and memory care with a variety of services and a range of floor plan options. Amenities include restaurant dining, 24-hour bistro, concierge service, housekeeping, events and entertainment, personal care, transportation services, and more. Centrally located near Mercy One Medical Center with convenient access to major shopping centers and attractions, including Briarwood Golf, The District Shopping Center, Saylorville Lake Marina, Big Creek State Park, and Ankeny Community Theater.

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