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Wandering and Alzheimer’s – What You Should Do When It Starts

Wandering affects around 60 percent of the men and women diagnosed with dementia. As these people walk away from their home, it’s common for them to not know their name or address. The area, even if they’ve lived there for decades, may be unfamiliar. Getting back home seems impossible.

If your parent has Alzheimer’s, you need to take measures to prevent wandering. Due to the agitation and insistance, it may not be as easy as you think. When your mom or dad wants to leave, aggression and determination are real possibilities. These are things you should do when wandering starts.

Home Care Newton MA - Wandering and Alzheimer's - What You Should Do When It Starts

Home Care Newton MA – Wandering and Alzheimer’s – What You Should Do When It Starts

Install Door and Window Alarms

Wandering can happen at any moment of the day or night. If you’re sleeping, you have no way of guaranteeing your parent won’t wake up and try to leave the house. Door and window alarms will alert you to your parent’s activities. If the alarm goes off, you’ll be able to respond quickly.

Put in Locks in Unusual Places

To get out of the house, your parent will look for the common deadbolt and doorknob locks. Put in locks in unusual spots. Install a barrel bolt lock at the very top of the door frame. You could also put one at floor level. For a sliding patio door, put in a patio door security bar with a lock.

Keep Your Parent Busy During the Day

If you allow your parent to nap during the day, it’s more likely that your mom or dad will be restless in the early morning hours. Try to eliminate an afternoon nap by planning fun activities during the normal nap time. If your mom tends to nap at 1 p.m., arrange to go for a walk through a park or gardens at that time. On a rainy day, you could bake something or turn on some music and dance.

Hire Home Care Aides to Provide Around-the-Clock Coverage

If you need to get your eight hours of sleep, hire a home care aide to be at your mom or dad’s house while you’re sleeping. Turn on white noise in your room to keep outside noises from keeping you awake. With someone else watching for wandering, you’ll be able to sleep.

That’s one of the ways home care services can help with Alzheimer’s care. Meal preparation, personal care, and showering are other services that may benefit you and your parent. Call our agency to discuss these and other helpful home care options.


If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care Services in Newton MA, or anywhere in Eastern Massachusetts, please call the caring staff at CARE Resolutions – (508) 906-5572.

Erica Tomasello, CEO

Erica Tomasello, has a background in Education and Clinical Psychology. She has worked with her mother for years, developing Care Resolutions into a premiere agency. Erica, and in turn, the agency's staff, continue to expand their knowledge with the ever growing development of understanding the aging process and geriatric disease. We are a member with Home Care Association of America and NFIB. We are also affiliated with NASW, National Association of Professional and Executive Women, Alzheimer's Partnership, Alzheimer's Association of Mass, MA Council for Home Care Aides.

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