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Looking After Grandchildren | Common Signs

  • Cannot remember the names and faces of their grandchildren
  • Confuses grandchildren for their own children
  • Yells at or becomes easily angry with grandchildren
  • Behaves in unsafe ways around grandchildren (e.g. leaves stove on)
  • Needs assistance when looking after grandchildren
  • Forgets they were looking after grandchildren
Looking After Grandchildren | General Description

Many of the most enjoyable and important interactions of many older adults involve looking after their young grandchildren. To take on such a responsibility requires a lot of skills, but especially requires good judgment. Unfortunately, even more than the memory problems of early Alzheimer's disease , questions about judgment and safety make it very difficult for the person you care for to look after their grandchildren. Most dementias affect a person's judgment and decision making abilities . This, along with memory problems, can make it difficult for them to behave appropriately, safely, and responsibly. They may forget what they were doing, they may forget who the grandchildren are or they may not remember how to act around children. However, under proper supervision there is no reason why the person you care for shouldn't continue to spend time with their grandchildren.

As people with Frontotemporal dementia have erratic behaviour, sudden dramatic mood changes and frustration that they cannot express, it would be wise to not leave them unattended with the care and responsibility of a child or frail/ infirmed adult. The hallucinations of Lewy body dementia, and the combination of poor motor performance and cognitive and judgment problems in Parkinson's disease dementia also interfere with this important responsibility.

The first step in taking a more active role in symptom management is understanding how a symptom is affecting everyday life; the next step is communicating this knowledge to the care planning team and family members. SymptomGuideTM is designed with this goal in mind.

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See Also:
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Judgment
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Decision Making
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Unsafe Actions
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Low Self Esteem
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Executive Function
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Memory
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Last updated January 9, 2019
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