Stress Free Traveling for Someone with Dementia
Summer has long been a time of traveling and leisure activities. As a caregiver the idea of traveling with someone who has Alzheimer’s or other dementias can be stressful, however with the right planning everyone can participate and enjoy in this meaningful activity.
First step is to take into account the needs, abilities and safety of the person with dementia. It is best to go with the option that will provide the most comfort and least amount of anxiety. One way to do this is by sticking to places that were familiar before the onset of dementia. It is also important to be aware of the time of day that is best for the person to travel. It is important to remain realistic.
Safety is also another concern when it comes to travel. Changes in environment can cause wandering. Consider enrolling in MedicAlert® + Alzheimer’s Association Safe Return®, a 24-hour nationwide emergency response service for individuals with Alzheimer’s or a related dementia who wander or have a medical emergency.
Communication is Key
Make sure to communicate and share your plans and itinerary with emergency contacts, and keep a copy of the itinerary with you at all times. If you plan on staying at a hotel or flying, make sure to contact staff ahead of time and let them know of your needs so that they may better assist you.
Lastly, be prepared, pack any medications, have up-to-date medical information, list of emergency contacts, and keep any other important documents with you at all times. There is no reason everyone can’t enjoy a safe and fun vacation.
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