Alzheimer's affects people in different ways. Some wander and can't find their way home. Others become terrified to set foot outside. People with Alzheimer's may become easily agitated, have a hard time sleeping, or suddenly hate meals they used to love.
There are more unusual ways that seniors with Alzheimer's can act. When this happens to your family, it's often challenging and causes stress for those providing homecare. You should know you're not alone.
Here are some of the unusual Alzheimer's behaviors.
You're helping your dad get out of his chair and he starts touching you. He strokes your hair. He kisses you on the lips and lets that kiss linger. It's concerning, but it's the loss of inhibitions that causes it.
Reinforce who you are. Call him dad several times. Grab his hands and hold them when he tries to touch you. After a few seconds, he'll forget all about it. If he doesn't leave the room for a while until he does.
Undressing in Public Locations
You take your mom out shopping and stop for lunch. While waiting for your meal, your mom starts taking off her pants. Again, this is due to the loss of inhibitions.
It can help to put your mom in pants she can't easily unfasten. If she struggles with buttons, a pair of jeans with a button fly can stop her undressing in public. You may need to distract her if she's in clothing she can easily remove.
People with Alzheimer's can become aggressive and abusive. They may hit, pinch, yell, and scream. If it happens to your child, it's especially frightening. Try not to leave your mom alone with your kids. Remind them that if something happens, it's the disease. It's not that they did anything wrong.
Shoplifting on Trips to Stores
Your dad joins you in the store. On the way out, you're stopped. He's tucked several candy bars in his pockets. He's been caught shoplifting.
It's very unlikely that this was intentional. Seniors go into stores and forget they have to pay. He may have forgotten something was in his hands or that he put something in his pockets.
When you shop with your dad, stick to a handful of stores. Mom and pop stores usually work out the best. Stop by and explain that your dad has Alzheimer's and may not realize he's not paid for an item. Ask if you can create a prepaid account that they use to deduct items he does take.
Make sure you take care of yourself. Don't let stress and frustration build up until you're ready to explode. Hire homecare services for respite care. Go out with friends, take a short vacation, or have a day off for errands or fun activities. Just be sure you are taking breaks when necessary. Call our homecare agency to learn more.
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Wherever their home may be, our caregivers can help keep your loved ones safe. Call our local Niagara office at (289) 434-4704 to learn how elderly care services can assist your family.