Tips for Visiting Someone with Dementia Over the Holidays

Family holiday time opening presents

Seniors with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia can still find joy in having visitors. Ensuring a positive experience during these visits simply requires a bit of preparation. At Whole Life Home Care, we value making these moments special for everyone involved.

Read on to discover valuable insights for a meaningful visit.

4 Smart Strategies for Thoughtful Visits at Whole Life Home Care

  1. Optimize the Experience: Try visiting with just 1 or 2 people at a time.
  2. Time It Right: Schedule visits during the time of day when your older adult is typically at their best, ensuring a more enjoyable interaction.
  3. Create a Serene Setting: Minimize distractions by maintaining a calm and quiet environment. Turn off the TV or loud music.
  4. Share Helpful Insights: Review helpful guidelines in advance, to familiarize yourself with essential information for a positive visit.

Here are five essential tips for visiting someone with Alzheimer’s:

  1. Friendly Interaction: Keep your tone and body language positive.
  2. Speak Thoughtfully: Speak slowly, in short sentences, and make eye contact.
  3. Respect Silence: Be comfortable with moments of silence; they might appreciate it as much as talking.
  4. Follow Their Lead: Allow them to guide the conversation and activities, avoiding the imposition of specific topics.
  5. Meaningful Touch: Offer hugs or gentle touches, respecting personal boundaries and obtaining permission.


Things to remember: 

1. Avoid Memory Probing: Refrain from asking, “do you remember?” to prevent potential anger or embarrassment.

2. Skip Arguments: If they share something incorrect, let it pass without engaging in arguments.

3. Overlook Mistakes: Avoid pointing out mistakes as it can negatively impact their feelings and hinder the conversation.

4. Acknowledge Moments of Clarity: Recognize that many people with Alzheimer’s may have moments of clarity.

5. Remain Unaffected: Don’t take any mean or nasty remarks personally; the disease may cause confusion, frustration, fear, or anger.




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