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Verbal Communication:

  • Talk with the person, not at the person
  • Be an active listener
  • Allow for expression of the persons feelings and share your understanding of the situation
  • Avoid arguing
  • Avoid attempts to reason with the person
  • Do not assume that the person understands what you are trying to tell them
  • Listen to the responses from the person


Non-Verbal Communication:

  • Avoid sudden movements
  • Use slow and deliberate gestures when appropriate
  • Use touch judiciously
  • Speak with a calm and soothing voice
  • Do not use actions that the person may interpret as threatening
  • Sit when speaking rather than standing over the person



  • Allow personal space
  • Allow privacy
  • Use signs on bathroom, bedroom
  • Install motion detector lights
  • Use lighting especially early in the morning and in the evening



  • Pet therapy
  • Recreational activities
  • Music therapy
  • Art therapy
  • Dance therapy
  • Outdoors supervised walks
  • Late afternoon walks to help alleviate sun downing



  • Music
  • Audiotapes of family  members
  • Hand massage and / or therapeutic touch
  • Aromatherapy, decrease white noise, exercise



  • Frequent reassurance that the person is safe and at home
  • Do not try reasoning
  • Consider electronic bracelets, identification bracelets,  or alarm systems
  • Locks on doors


Repetitive Behaviors

  • Respond in a positive manner; use distraction
  • Try a meaningful task for the person
  • Give positive feedback for appropriate behavior
  • Try to involve the person in a simple task (folding laundry)


Inappropriate Sexual Behavior

  • If the person has removed clothing, calmly redress
  • If masturbating avoid confrontation
  • Try to identify what situation preceded the behavior



  • Care Giver to remain calm and relaxed
  • Music may help


Preventing Symptoms:

  • Stop relying on recent memory; work with long term memory
  • Provide consistency in routine and environment
  • Learn about the persons past.  Keep things simple
  • Remove distractions.  Adjust expectations

PatrickHelpful Techniques for the Care Giver