My mom's become resistant to my help, and she's now hard to handle. She hasn't been able to manage her basic day-to-day needs without my help, but she believes she doesn't have any problems and doesn't need help. She's easily agitated and gets upset when I try to get her dressed. I'm just frustrated, and I don't know what to do as a mom. Where are you, mom? You're going to be late for your doctor's appointment. Are you seriously planning on wearing that? It's 80 degrees outside. Okay, look, let's wear this instead. You don't have time. Let's hurry mom.
What is wrong with you? I can do it. I can help you. Mom doesn't need your help. Leave me alone, dad, do this to me. Agitation and anxiety can manifest as difficulty sitting still, pacing, fidgeting, and acting irritable and afraid. nervous, worried, or just being resistant to help from others. The behaviors are often triggered by a feeling of loss of control, misperceiving situations or actions as threats to unmet needs. inability to communicate clearly and frustration with tasks or interactions with family and caregivers.
Changes in the usual routine can also cause agitation and anxiety. People with dementia, for example, may have impaired insight towards their own cognition and ability level due to their disease. As a result, they struggle to understand their limitations in terms of what they can and cannot do. They may not realize that they need help as they do not see themselves as having problems. This can lead to agitation when someone tries to help them with one approach.
A person with dementia makes a difference if you feel angry, impatient, or frustrated or if you rush someone or seem irritable. They can sense your mood. Reacting with apprehension, resistance, anxiety, and agitation can then escalate to inappropriate behaviors such as hitting or biting. It is very important to remember that people with dementia react and respond differently to how a caregiver approaches them. How you speak to them is key. Good morning, Mom. How are you? I'm all right. Okay, what would you like to wear today? You look good in the green or the blue. I just colored if you want to try it today. Gerry hoped I could do it myself. I'm sorry that I made you feel that way. You're doing very well, and I'm just here to help in case you need me. I know you can do it yourself very well. I love you so much. Can I stay with you? We can do this together. Okay, so we are going to go to the doctor, and then we can go get some ice cream.
How does that sound? Oh, that sounds good. Okay, let's get you dressed, mom. Let's lose this. After all, I want you to be comfortable. Let's see. I think this is going to look good on you. Here are a few tips on how to respond to agitation and anxiety. Allow ample time to complete tasks and don't rush your loved one. Use a gentle tone of voice but do not be condescending. Try to keep your body language positive and use calming gestures and a gentle touch. Don't be demanding or bark orders at your loved one; instead provide reassurance.
Speak in calming tones and phrases to let the individual know you're there for support. For instance, if your loved one is a late riser, plan doctor's appointments for the afternoon. Simplify the environment to reduce frustration or confusion. For example, thin out the closet so that it is easier for your loved one to see inside. You will have fewer clothing options to choose from and easier-to-put-on clothes.
Clothing options to choose from and clothes that are easy to put on