Clinging and following
Your patience can truly be tested if the person with dementia starts clinging to you and follow you around. Most likely, the person is trying to make sense of the world around them and may feel that you are the only safe and stable feature in their life. It is not easy to endure when the person wants your attention constantly. It can be difficult for you to find time to relax. Finding strategies to make the person with dementia feel more secure is necessary to avoid wearing you out. Reassure the person that you will return. This could be difficult since the person might have reduced or no sense of time. Nevertheless, you should try to reassure the person that you will return even if they may feel that it takes too long. Take some time to yourself. Try not to feel guilty for needing time for yourself. You are possibly the most important person in the life of someone with dementia, but we need to care for ourselves, before we can care for others. Do not wait until you are too exhausted to plan for breaks from caregiving. Ask for help. Perhaps you can ask someone to visit the person with dementia when you have to go out. Preferably, somebody the person trust so they do not try to follow you. It is also possible to contact a support group, a day center, home-care etc. Try to find something for the person to do. Keep the person occupied with simple tasks and activities. This might help to distract the attention away from you, and you get some time alone. Try to acknowledge their feelings. Offer reassurance that they are safe.
Reassure the person that you will return
Take some time to yourself
Ask for help
Try to find something for the person to do
Try to acknowledge their feelings