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What to look for?

Wandering | Common Signs

  • Gets out of bed and wanders in the night
  • Leaves the house and forgets where they came from or where they are going. (This is also an example of the symptom of disorientation to place.)
  • Leaves the house without any purpose
  • Circles or paces around a room
  • Does not recognize current dwelling as home
  • Appears restless or has energy to spare (This is another example of the symptom of restlessness.)
  • Searching for something or someone in the past. (This can be an example of the symptom of delusions.)
Wandering | General Description

Often times, for people with dementia, the rhythmic, repetitive action of walking (which can also be an example of repetitive behaviour) is comforting and therefore there is not always another purpose behind this action other than to relieve anxiety through the movement itself.

It is important to recognize that there is often no reason behind the wandering. This will keep you from getting frustrated with trying to find a cause.

Some reasons for wandering might include:

  • Restlessness, or lost sense of what they feel they should be doing or thinking
  • Disorientation , or inability to recognize where they are or to find where they want to go (i.e. they may be searching for a childhood friend or a past residence)
  • Agitation or boredom, as they may have a lack of activities to keep them occupied, they may be easing discomfort or they may be trying to use excess energy
  • The need for purposeful or work-like activity

If this symptom is affecting your daily life, SymptomGuideTM can help you understand and communicate with your doctor and family members. You can start using SymptomGuideTM now by creating your individualized profile.

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See Also:
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Delusions and Paranoia
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Restlessness
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Disorientation to Place
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Repetitive Behaviour
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Anxiety and Worry
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Restlessness
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Disorientation to Time
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Unsafe Actions
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Memory
About Dementia > Treatments for Dementia > Exercise Program
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Last updated December 7, 2018
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