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How to Respond When an Aging Loved One with Dementia Becomes Stubborn

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A little stubbornness is usually seen as a harmless personality trait, but when a senior develops dementia, stubbornness can become problematic. For many caregivers, one of the most challenging parts of taking care of a senior with dementia is when their loved one regularly resists the family’s efforts to take care of him or her. Managing a stubborn senior who has dementia is never easy, but these tips can make everything go a little more smoothly for you and your loved one.

Don’t Worry about the Small Stuff

Getting worked up over every small example of a senior’s stubbornness, such as wanting to wear a sweater that doesn’t match or insisting the day is Wednesday instead of Tuesday, is just a waste of time. Dementia often makes seniors say illogical things and behave very stubbornly, so trying to make your loved one change his or her mind is futile. As long as your loved one isn’t harming him or herself or others, don’t be too concerned about the stubbornness. Be willing to make compromises with your loved one. Everything might not be done your way, but you can ensure he or she is safe and healthy. 

Professional caregivers with training and expertise in dementia care can often identify the sources of stubbornness and respond effectively and compassionately. Even when families have the best intentions, caring for a senior loved one with dementia can be challenging. Fortunately, Home Care Assistance is here to help. We are a leading provider of dementia care. Oakville families can take advantage of our flexible and customizable care plans, and our caregivers always stay up to date on the latest developments in senior care.

Offer More Choices

For many seniors with dementia, stubbornness is a way to retain independence. They feel like they lack control in life, so being contradictory and difficult with caregivers is a way to feel like they’re still in control. You cannot entirely alleviate this issue, but it may be helpful to give your loved one choices. For example, if your loved one needs to be more active, ask whether he or she would like to walk around the block or join an exercise class. This sort of action may help your loved one feel like he or she is still in charge and encourage a positive response to your suggestions.

A trained caregiver with experience in caring for seniors with dementia can be a fantastic resource for family members. Families looking for top-rated Oakville home care service providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.

Spend More Quality Time Together

Sometimes the reason seniors with dementia act out is because they feel like it’s the only way for them to get attention. Many caregivers accidentally end up focusing too much on the daily tasks of caregiving to remember to spend time with their loved ones, and this loneliness can cause behavioral issues. Try to make time to play a game, look at pictures, or chat with your loved one outside of your caregiving duties.

Make Sure You’re Officially a GuardianAs

dementia progresses and stubbornness increases, your parent may refuse to get help, let anyone else live with him or her, or even admit there’s a problem. In these cases, it may be wise to seek legal counsel. Having a legal power of attorney and a medical power of attorney can enable you to make wise medical and financial decisions for your loved one even when he or she is being stubborn.

If your loved one has dementia and becomes stubborn, these suggestions can help you gain understanding and manage his or her care more effectively. Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Oakville Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. Reach out to us at Home Care Assistance if you need compassionate, professional care for your loved one. Call one of our dedicated Care Managers today at (519) 590-2792 to learn about the high quality of our in-home care services.