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Personality Changes | Management Strategies

  1. Much of their frustration and irritation comes from their loss of control and independence. It may be helpful to give the person you care for tasks that they are able to complete unassisted at certain times. This will give them a feeling of independence and make them feel that they are being of assistance. For example, at meal times have the person you care for set the table or peel vegetables.

  2. If the person you care for has become increasingly worried and anxious about you or others who are close to him or her, make sure you reassure them where you are and what you are doing. If the person you care for will forget if you leave the house, leave a note detailing where you are and when you will be back. Also plan activities that you can do together such as peeling vegetables or drying the dishes to establish a trusting relationship.

  3. If the person you care for consistently has low motivation or is depressed, try and encourage the person you care for to do activities that they enjoy and are good at. They will be more likely to participate and it will remind them of their vitality. Exercise is a good remedy for depression and regaining a sense of independence. For example, taking a walk is a spontaneous and inexpensive activity that can be beneficial for both you and the person you care for.

  4. Many times aggression, irritability, frustration and criticisms are all products of resentment or anger towards the disease. Sometimes counselling can help a person with Alzheimer's disease accept the diagnosis . A skilled therapist can help them share grief, despair, anger and self loathing. The extent of their dementia will decide whether or not this is a helpful way to deal with some of the emotional problems the person you care for may be exhibiting or experiencing.

  5. People tend to act differently when they are placed in unfamiliar situations, or are frightened. Try and create a warm and caring atmosphere for the person you care for, and try and keep it as familiar as possible. Putting up pictures of loved ones, playing their favourite music and cooking favourite foods all may help to maintain a relaxing and comfortable atmosphere.

  6. Mood swings and extreme changes in behaviour are often triggered by certain situations or times of day. Try to eliminate or manage these situations when possible. For example, if they become angry and complain at meal times try and involve them in the process. Ask them when they want to eat, or what they would like to eat.

  7. If behaviour which you deem to be inappropriate or hurtful occurs, try not to react with shock or anger. Instead gently but firmly remind the person that their behaviour is inappropriate. After an episode has passed do not remind the person of the incident.

  8. If the person you care for has become less talkative, try to involve them in small conversations, ask them questions that they know the answer to or about topics that they are interested in. This will help to make them feel included and valued in that social setting.

See Also:
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Low Mood
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Irritability/ Frustration
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Anxiety and Worry
Symptom Library > Personality Changes > Independence
Symptom Library > Behaviour > Irritability/ Frustration
Symptom Library > Leisure Activities > Social Interaction/ Withdrawal
About Dementia > Treatments for Dementia > Counselling
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Motivation
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Inhibition
About Dementia > Treatments for Dementia > Exercise
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Last updated January 13, 2019
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