The 5 R’s of Dementia Care

Proactive Tips from Our Trusted Dementia Care Experts

As your loved one’s dementia progresses, many behavioural issues may arise. Often, paranoia, false ideas, frustration, irritability, and anxiety afflict the person living with dementia. All of these behaviours are bound to have an intense emotional impact on you as you’re losing someone you’ve known and loved for a lifetime. In the face of this emotional intensity (your loved one may accuse you of stealing, insist that he hates his favourite dish, or decide that her husband is an impostor), it’s important to resist responding with logic and reason.

The 5 R’s are a psychological tool-set intended to aid caregivers when dealing with a person living with dementia. The 5 R’s allow caregivers to separate from the emotional impact of behavioural issues that can arise when a loved one has dementia.

The R’s

  • Remain calm: Don’t argue or try to reason. Take a deep breath before you act.
  • Respond to feelings: Validate how your loved one seems to be feeling at the time.
  • Reassure: Remind your loved one that he or she is safe and cared for.
  • Remove: Remove yourself physically or distance yourself psychologically for a moment to regain your composure.
  • Return: Return fully to the situation when your loved one begins to calm down.

Remember, no matter how hard you try, you can never separate the emotional connection to your loved one from the irrational behaviours, but you can try your best to respond in a manner that won’t worsen the situation.

Contact us today for more information about using the 5 R’s and other dementia care tips.