Why Should You Avoid Arguing with a Loved One Who Has Dementia?

By Robert D. Liken CPC, CTS, President

January 6, 2017

Home Care in Sewickley PA

Sometimes family caregivers feel that it’s important to make sure that an elderly loved one who has dementia understands what is real and what isn’t. The problem is that these actions can actually Home-Care-in-Sewickley-PAturn around and become an ugly situation for you and your elderly loved one. Avoiding these arguments is a much better idea and can help your loved one to stay calmer.
His Version of Reality Is Not the Same as Yours
Your elderly loved one isn’t necessarily living in the same reality that you’re living in and that can present a problem when your realities clash with each other. He doesn’t remember that some of his loved ones have passed away or that he no longer works in the same location where he worked for years. When someone’s reality is different from yours, often no amount of arguing with that person is likely to be successful.
Arguing Is Stressful for Your Loved One
It’s not just that you’re not likely to win an argument that makes it a bad idea. The very act of arguing with your elderly loved one is likely to raise his blood pressure, amp up his stress, and generally cause his anxiety levels to skyrocket. That stress can cause your loved one to start acting in unpredictable ways. Continuing to disagree with your loved one may even lead to extreme anger, which brings everything to yet another stress level.
Your Loved One May Overreact
Arguing can cause your loved one to overreact with the strength of his angst. Your loved one could wind up shouting, trying to escape his home, or any number of other reactions. Once he gets to this point, it can be difficult to calm your loved one down, which can lead to many hours of agitation for him. Your loved one might start to resist all sorts of activities, including eating, drinking, and hygiene. Ultimately, that only punishes himself, but it’s still a tremendous cause for concern.
If you’re having trouble learning how to avoid arguing with your loved one, talk to his doctor and to his home care providers about strategies that they suggest.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care in Sewickley, PA, please contact the friendly staff at Liken Home Care.  Call (412) 693-6820 or (855) 856-0551