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Memory Loss Can Bring on Anger and Aggression


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By Shawn Turcotte

Owner of Home Instead Senior Care Edmonton, CPCA

Grandmother suffering from Alzheimer's

Tips to Provide Alzheimer’s Care with Help from Professional Home Care Services

Sue’s mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s several years ago. Since then, Sue has watched her vibrant, loving mother revert into a pressure cooker spouting off steam in angry rages. These behaviours are foreign for a woman who welcomed everyone into her home with poise and grace. Additionally, she was extremely patient with anyone she came into contact with. However, Sue noticed that the aggressive outbursts came with higher frequency, and she was at a loss for why this was happening.

Alzheimer’s disease is a health crisis for North America. Families receiving the devastating news may be at a loss at how to proceed. At Home Instead Senior Care Edmonton, we understand the toll this disease takes on Canadian families. Our compassionate staff is highly-trained in Alzheimer’s care. We assist you and your loved ones through this trying season of life.

Tips to Handle Angry Outbursts from Your Loved One Dealing with Alzheimer’s

Knowing how to handle your dad’s frequent outbursts begins with understanding the different triggers he may be facing, such as:

  • Physical – Dad may be extremely uncomfortable, sore, dizzy, or nauseous. The inability to perform a simple task can also bring on anger and frustration. Lack of sleep and time of day should be considered as well.
  • Emotional – Mom may be overly stimulated, even in her own home. Sometimes boredom and loneliness add to the issue.
  • Mental – Your senior will become more and more confused as the disease progresses. This will lead to anger and aggression. Remember that sudden changes can cause confusion and exasperate your loved one.

Now that you understand a little about different triggers, what can you do when your aging parent shows anger?

  • Remain calm and try to determine what is causing the distress. You may be able to alleviate or solve the problem.
  • Avoid trying to physically wrangle your loved one when they are in a fit of anger. This compounds the issue. The only caveat is when you or someone else’s safety is in question.
  • When speaking, use calm and reassuring tones. Take time to speak slowly and softly.
  • Try to divert their attention from the immediate situation. It may be the cause of the behaviour.
  • Remove or limit distractions. Again, overstimulation can cause your dad to react aggressively.

Give Mom the Best Support with a Personal Support Worker from Home Instead

The most important thing you can do when dealing with a senior faced with Alzheimer’s is to ask for help. Join a support group and get much-needed relief with respite care from a personal support worker. It would be best for all parties if you had time to recharge so you can be the caregiver your senior deserves. Our compassionate staff is eager to assist you or your loved one with Alzheimer’s care and any of our other senior care services.

If you find yourself in a situation where you believe you and your loved one can benefit from Alzheimer’s care at home, contact  Home Instead Senior Care to find a professionally trained CAREGiver in your the Edmonton area.

Call us at (780) 439-9990 to schedule a no-obligation in-home consultation.

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