Dementia patients face serious memory loss, which causes them to feel confused and sometimes anxious. They forget their surroundings and simple directions. As a result, they will find themselves wandering off and walking to unfamiliar places, which can be very dangerous. Luckily, there are measures that caregivers and family members who live with dementia patients can take to prevent wandering. But first, you need to understand what wondering is to know how to prevent it.

What is Wandering?

Wandering is leaving a defined place, such as a care facility or home, with no purpose or capacity to return on one’s own. It can be a major problem because it puts the individual in danger of harm or injury. In addition, people with Alzheimer’s disease lose their capacity to identify familiar places and faces. Wandering or becoming lost or confused about one’s whereabouts is typical in dementia patients, and it can occur at any stage of the disease. Wandering can result from several factors, including:

  • Agitation
  • Disorientation
  • Escaping from a real or perceived threat
  • Expressing boredom
  • Perplexity
  • Delusions
  • Desire to explore
  • Discomfort or pain
  • Expressing boredom
  • Excess energy

How to prevent wandering among dementia patients

  • Monitors and alarms

Some devices help prevent wandering, in addition to putting bells on the front door. There are numerous varieties of wandering alarms for dementia patients on the market that can alert caregivers to impending elopement. Motion sensors are a good example. These gadgets alarm when activated, alerting anyone nearby that the dementia patient has entered a certain part of the home or opened a door or window. There are also GPS tracking technologies that can track a senior’s location.

  • Provide adequate supervision

To avoid wandering, ensure someone is always with the individual or at least nearby. It may be okay for someone in the early stages of dementia to remain alone for brief periods. However, as dementia progresses, constant surveillance will likely be essential. Stay with your loved one in unfamiliar or changing locations, such as shops, parks, malls, and restaurants. Consider hiring in-home care for respite to work or spend time with family if you are the primary caregiver.

  • Ensure that the individual always carries identification

It won’t stop the activity, but ensuring your loved one has identification on them at all times is critical. Remember that more than simply placing an ID in a person’s wallet is important because they may remove it on purpose or by accident. Wearing medical ID jewelry, such as a bracelet or pendant, is smart. You might also stitch identification onto the garment of a loved one.

  • Provide a Safe Environment for Wandering

Instead of prohibiting a senior from straying, give a well-secured and supervised location for walking in the compound. Walking together throughout the day may also assist in limiting the urge to elope in the evenings. This is when many dementia patients suffer symptoms of sundowner’s disease and attempt to run away. This not only helps a senior maintain mobility but also helps them burn off surplus energy and feel more in control of their motions.

It is not always possible to supervise a patient or relative with dementia. It can be very costly even to attempt 24/7 supervision. However, with these tips, you can rest assured that your relative/patient doesn’t wander off; if they do, you will find them in their right shape without any injuries.