Wandering is common in the latter stages of Alzheimer’s. It’s not a guarantee, but it’s hard when your parent does start wandering. Constant supervision, locked doors, and locked windows are essential.

When you’re a family caregiver, it can be hard to watch your parent’s every movement. Your dad is always trying to get outside. He pounds at the glass and tries every door handle. You can’t go to the bathroom unless he’s sleeping.

How do you manage this symptom of Alzheimer’s? What can you do to stop your dad’s desire to wander off?

Get Him on a Regular Schedule

Elderly Care Hawthorne NJ - Three Ways to Halt Wandering Tendencies in Alzheimer's

Elderly Care Hawthorne NJ – Three Ways to Halt Wandering Tendencies in Alzheimer’s

Don’t let your dad oversleep during the day. If he sleeps too much while you’re doing chores around the house, he’s more likely to be awake when you’re trying to sleep. Make sure you keep him busy.

Get him up at the same time each morning. Go for a walk before or after breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Don’t let him sit around and watch TV all day. Make him do things that use up energy. Dancing, singing, playing games, and helping with chores are all going to help tire him out for a full night’s sleep.

Place Alarms and Locks on Doors and Windows

It may feel wrong, but you need to install locks on doors and windows. Put the locks in places that aren’t typical. A deadbolt at the top of the door will be more effective than one in a place your dad expects one. An expandable curtain rod between the top of a closed window and the top of the window frame will prevent him from opening the window.

At the same time, install alarms. If your dad does manage to get a door or window open, the alarm will alert you. You’ll be able to quickly follow him and redirect him back to the house.

Learn How to Redirect

Redirect your dad’s desire to escape. See if there’s a reason for his need to get out. He may simply want some fresh air. Take him outside for a walk around the yard or neighborhood. To get him back inside, use a bribe.

One thing that works well is to walk to a local bakery or corner store. Buy something that needs to go into the refrigerator or freezer. Use that as the reason you have to go back and go inside as quickly as possible.

Who helps you during the day? If you’re up half the night making sure your dad doesn’t wander away in the middle of the night, you need someone helping out while you catch up on sleep. Elderly care services are an ideal solution.

With an elderly care aide helping for four hours a day, you have four hours to get uninterrupted sleep. When you get up and shower, you’ll be refreshed and ready to help your dad with the things he can’t do on his own. Call our elderly care agency to make arrangements for daily care services.

If you or a senior family member are considering hiring Elderly Care Services in Hawthorne NJ, please contact the caring staff at Caring Solutions Home Care LLC. In-home senior care servicing Bergen & Passaic Counties. Call today at (973) 427-3553.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Pamela DelColle, RN, CCRN