Dementia can be a difficult thing for kids to understand. It’s often hard to see our loved ones act differently than we remember them. If you have a grandparent who has dementia, you may be wondering what to expect when you visit. It can be hard to see your loved one struggle with this disease, but it is important to remember that they are still the same person inside.
What is Dementia?
Dementia is a broad term used to describe a decline in mental ability. This can include problems with memory, language, and thinking. Dementia is caused by damage to the brain. This damage may be due to disease, injury, or other conditions.
What are the symptoms of Dementia?
The symptoms of dementia can vary depending on the severity of the disease and the stage of progression. Some common symptoms include:
¬ Memory loss, especially of recent events
¬ Problems with communication, such as forgetting words or being unable to find the right word
¬ Poor judgement and decision making
¬ Difficulty with activities that used to be easy, like bathing or dressing oneself
¬ Withdrawing from friends and activities
¬ Repetitive statements or movements
¬ Hallucinations, delusions, and paranoia
Tips for Kids When Visiting Grandparents
It’s important to remember that just because someone has dementia doesn’t mean they are no longer themselves. People with dementia may act differently than they used to, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t still in there. They still know who you are and they still love you.
Here are some tips on how to best deal with a visit to a grandparent who has dementia:
¬ Be patient: It’s important to be patient when communicating with someone who has dementia. They may not be able to process information as quickly as they used to, so it’s important to give them time.
¬ Listen more than you talk: Try to let your grandparent do most of the talking. This can be difficult for kids , who usually like to talk a lot, but it’s important to let them have their say.
¬ Focus on the positive: When you’re talking to your grandparent, try to focus on the positive things in their life. This will help them feel good about themselves and remind them of all the good things they’ve done.
¬ Be prepared for changes in behavior: Grandparents with dementia may act differently than they used to. They may be agitated, confused, or angry. It’s important to understand that this is a symptom of the disease and not because they don’t love you anymore.
¬ Be understanding: Dementia can be very frustrating for both the person with dementia and their loved ones. Just remember that your grandparent is still in there, they just may not be able to express themselves like they used to.
¬ Don’t be scared: Kids often feel scared when visiting a grandparent who has dementia. Remember that these changes are normal, but it doesn’t change who they are.
¬ Finishing a visit: When it’s time to leave, don’t just walk out. Say goodbye and tell them you’ll see them soon.
Grandparents love to be visited by their family members, especially grandkids. However, it can be difficult when a grandparent starts to show signs of dementia. They may act differently than they used to. They may be agitated, confused, or angry. It’s important to understand that these changes are normal. Dementia is a serious disease, but it doesn’t have to change the relationship you have with your grandparent. Just remember to be patient, don’t be scared, and enjoy your visit!