As dementia progresses, it gets harder to take your mom out of the home. She becomes fearful because nothing is familiar. She doesn’t even recognize her house when you drive back in the driveway.
Before you take her out, ask yourself if she really needs to go. While she has to be there for appointments, a trip to the grocery store isn’t necessarily essential for her to attend. When you have to take her out, these tips can help make it less stressful for both of you.
Tell Her It’s Time to Go an Hour in Advance
If your mom tends to delay getting ready, tell her it’s time to go an hour or so in advance. If you have to leave at noon, tell her it’s time to go at 10:50. That way, her repeated trips to the bathroom to brush her teeth, take a shower, or go to the toilet again won’t make you late.
Have Something Tempting to Get Her to Follow You
You might have to tempt your mom to follow you. You know she loves chocolate. Have her favorite chocolate in hand and use that to get her out to the car. Keep repeating that she can have it as soon as she’s in the car.
You might not want her having food in the car. Use something equally tempting like her favorite cellphone game, a book, or a magazine.
Promise to Go to Her Favorite Place
Instead of telling her she has to see her doctor, tell her you’re going to lunch at her favorite restaurant. You can keep that promise, but do it after she’s gone through her appointment. Once she’s seen her doctor, go out to lunch or for an early dinner.
Have Someone Else With You
It can be easier to manage trips out if someone else is helping. You have to go shopping, but you also have to take your mom to her dentist. Bring someone else.
While you’re shopping, you may find your mom keeps adding things to the cart that she says she needs. The person with you can be running the extra items back when she gets distracted by something else.
Arrange Companion Care at Home for Her
Sometimes, it’s better to leave your mom at home. While you may be used to weekend shopping trips together, it may be overwhelming to her now. Hire a companion care at home aide to spend time with her when you’re running errands. A companion care at home specialist can help you understand the pricing and how to schedule services.