For loved ones living with dementia and other forms of memory loss-related conditions, they may experience bouts of aggressive behavior where they would scream and yell. At times, they are obviously agitated by a situation, whereas it can also be at random, which places much stress on their family members and caregivers as they’re unable to solve the problem. In such cases when loved ones would yell and scream, they may either shout at the top of their lungs, cry loudly, and even move around and damage things around them. These actions no doubt are distressing for both loved ones and those surrounding them. However, it’s not all bad news as there are ways to handle these behaviors. Here are some tips and tricks to managing screaming and crying in loved ones.
First and foremost, it’s important for you or any caregiver to remain calm and cool-headed in such situations. This allows you to access the situation clearly and come up with an effective solution without resorting to violence or other behaviors that might put you and your loved ones at harm. It should also be a no-brainer that if you’re experiencing negative emotions, this will directly affect them and make them feel more stressed out. How you can stay calm is by practicing breathing exercises and to keep on repeating soothing words to yourself. You can also calm your loved ones down at the same time by ensuring that your voice is reassuring and placing a comforting hand on their shoulders.
Figure out the Trigger
Individuals who scream and cry are usually triggered by something, be it they’re feeling fear, discomfort, overwhelmed, to name a few. However, the most common triggers are a loud environment, boredom, and physical pain. Finding out the trigger is extremely important as it helps to stop those behaviors and allow your loved ones to settle down and to be at ease. Due to the number of potential triggers that can cause them to act up, you should take a step back and observe the situation and environment first in order to determine what is bothering them. Afterward, you can come up with solutions to tackle the problem.
Comfort Loved Ones
Of course, we should always look for ways to stop our loved ones from screaming and crying. As everyone differs from each other, each person has a specific method that works to calm them down. Some comforting activities that might work for the majority of people with dementia include placing them in a soothing environment, allowing them to mingle and interact with pets, providing some fresh air by taking them outdoors, and to give them their favorite snack or drink. Take some time to get to know your loved ones better, and see which techniques can help to take their mind off the stress. Some of these activities also function as a distraction, which prevents them from concentrating on something distressing.