Be safe during your holiday travels!

Happy Thanksgiving week! Today marks week four of our National Caregivers Month campaign. This week, we’re going to cover some safety basics that I think are especially relevant as we start the holiday season.

First up is travel safety. ‘Tis the season for road trips, cross country flights, nights in guest rooms, hotels and more. And if you happen to be traveling with someone with Alzheimer’s disease, you’ll want to be prepared. Be aware that that the change can be difficult for the person with Alzheimer’s so you’ll need to be extra vigilant about spotting the warning signs of anxiety and agitation.

If you’re planning on flying to your destination, prepare for your airport experience by calling ahead to inform the airline and airport medical service department of any needs you may have. Even if walking is not difficult, consider requesting a wheelchair so that an airport employee is assigned to help you get from place to place in the airport. And feel free to alert in-flight crew members and security personnel that you are traveling with a person with dementia in case assistance is available.

Once you arrive at your destination, whether driving, flying or other:

  • Let the neighbors know a person with Alzheimer’s is staying next door and ask them to keep their eye out for wandering or other unsafe behavior.
  • During the first few days after arrival, keep your schedule light with lots of down time.
  • Create opportunities to re-acclimate the person to the new environment.
  • Keep familiar things around.
  • Limit access to money and credit cards.
  • Limit access to driving.

You can read more about travel safety and other safety issues at our safety center located at www.alz.org/safety.

Don’t forget to share your experiences here, on our Facebook page or at www.alz.org/nadam. We want to hear from you!