Helping loved ones with dementia enjoy the holidays

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ST. LOUIS - When a loved one has dementia, the holidays can be a difficult time; not only for the person who has dementia but also for other family members.

Nurse Grace Leroux is with Bethesda Health Group's Senior Care and Services shared advice to make the holidays a little easier as everyone prepares for Thanksgiving.

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  • Try to honor past holiday traditions while keeping things simple.
  • If your loved one is in a skilled nursing community and physically able, take them home for the holiday.
  • Allow them to assist with the meal or preparations if they would like but keep the tasks simple.
  •  Give them space to rest.
  • Prepare other loved ones. They might be shocked by the person's appearance or their personality changes.
  •  People in the early stages of dementia may appreciate a mild correction if they are simply off about what day of the week it is.
  •  In the latter stages of dementia, meet them where they are in their reality.


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