Caregiver Resources - Behavioural Issues

As people age, they experience many changes, including physical, psychological, social and environmental; every individual reacts to these changes differently (1).

Older adults who are no longer able to communicate their needs and desires effectively  may engage in responsive behaviours, also refered to as challenging behaviours (2). This type of behaviour can include feeling annoyed, wandering, not wanting care, use of foul language, hitting and throwing (2). In these situations, it is helpful to use simple words, move slowly through activities and remain patient (3).

Caring for someone experiencing episodes of responsive behaviour is challenging. As a caregiver, it is essiental to stay emotionally, mentally and physically healthy. Seeking the support of community services, family members and friends can help ease stress or burden brought on by caregiving (3). Sharing tasks, solving problems and savouring the humour along the caregiving journey with others will help maintain your health. Finally, staying educated on your friend or family member’s condition can help you understand their experience and allow you to provide the best care you can (3).

References

(1)  Hilger. Z. (2009). Behaviour and emotions of aging. Retrieved from http://www.familycaregiversonline.net/online-education/behavior-and-emotions-of-aging/

(2)  Ontario Behavioural Support System Project Team. (2010). Behaviours have meaning -The Ontario behavioral support system project. Retrieved from http://www.nelhin.on.ca/Page.aspx?id=12028

(3)   Robinson, L., Wayne, M. S., & Segal, J. (2018). Tips for Alzhemier’s caregivers. Retrieved from https://www.helpguide.org/articles/alzheimers-dementia-aging/tips-for-alzheimers-caregivers.htm