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Comprehension/ Understanding | Management Strategies

  1. Sometimes the person you care for might find a lot of noise and people to be distracting or overwhelming. Try and decrease noise level and the number of people interacting with the person at one time.

  2. When in conversation with the person you care for, face the person directly, maintain eye contact and speak slowly and clearly. When asking questions, ensure that they require simple answers, such as yes and no, and allow plenty of time for response. If repeating a question or an answer, repeat using the exact same words. Changing the way you repeat something may be confusing, as he or she may think you are saying something entirely new. It is important to maintain adult conversation structure and not talk to them like they are a child. It also may be helpful to let friends and relatives be aware of these tips.

  3. When initiating conversation with the person you care for, try and begin with orientation information. Identify who you are, use the name of the person you are talking to, and state why you are there. This may help to reduce confusion and improve their understanding.

  4. If the person you care for is sometimes confused or uncertain about what to do next, start them with the activity to help guide them. This can be especially helpful in the later stages of the disease when important but simple tasks, such as personal care, can be made easier if presented in a simple, structured and natural way. For example, if they have finished washing their face, hand them their toothbrush to remind them of the next activity.

  5. Try and avoid environments or situations that tend to create confusion or uncertainty. For example, if they become confused by violence on a television show, change the channel, turn off the television and redirect the conversation or activity to a less disruptive topic.

See Also:
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Natural Progression and Staging
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Following Instructions
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Last updated January 13, 2019
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