Memory for Names and Faces
| Management Strategies
- If the person you care for is withdrawing from friends and family, it could be because they cannot remember their names or identify them. If this is the case, inform friends and relatives of ways to make the person more comfortable, such as telling them to introduce themselves and to suggest topics which you know that the person you care for can discuss.
- Fatigue can provide additional difficulty with name or face recall, so try to avoid conversation or social situations when you know the person is tired.
- It is important to stay calm and patient when communicating with the person you care for. Becoming upset or annoyed when they cannot remember your name will only frustrate the person you care for further, increase their anxiety and make communication even more difficult. Create a caring and understanding atmosphere to help encourage the person to keep trying.
- If the person you care for has difficulty recalling a name it is helpful to subtly prompt them, by bringing the name into conversation instead of interrupting them, or telling them the name they are looking for. However, in social situations the person you care for may look to you to assist them in conversation to avoid embarrassment. In this case, it is more appropriate to give them the name.
- A memory book can help to keep family, friends and special occasions straight. It contains photographs of people identified by name, time, place and date. Write the names, birthdays and wedding anniversaries underneath the appropriate pictures and review the book on a regular basis.
- Post a bulletin board listing names and photographs of people who regularly call or visit by the front door and the telephone.
- Try and limit social situations to a small number of people. This will help keep the person you care for from becoming overwhelmed by trying to remember a large number of names and faces.