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Coping with Aggression and Agitation in Alzheimer's and Dementia Patients


A person who has dementia may exhibit challenging behaviors for many reasons. Being sensitive to the emotion behind the behavior can help to manage stress and frustration.

  • Seek a doctor’s advice to determine if there is a medical cause or if medications are causing adverse side effects.

  • Limit outside noise, clutter or the number of persons in a room.

  • Keep to the same routines.

  • Reduce caffeine intake.

  • Do not move objects and furniture.

  • Dot the environment with familiar objects that promote pleasant memories.

  • Try gentle touch, soothing music, reading or walks.

  • Speak in a reassuring voice.

  • Distract the person with a snack or activity.

  • Learn to recognize behaviors – an agitated state or pulling at clothing, for example, could indicate a need to use the bathroom.

  • Do not try to restrain the person during an agitated reaction.

  • Keep dangerous objects out of reach.

  • If agitation increases at night, a nightlight may reduce confusion.

  • Acknowledge the person’s feelings.

Join us at Alcoeur Garden's Toms River location on the first Saturday of every month for a free Caregiver Support Group and additional tips on caring for someone with Alzheimer's or any form of dementia and on how to deal with caregiver stress.

Reference: alznj.org

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