Mother is Disoriented Returning Home From Day Care
Posted Aug 21 2012 12:00am
Dear Carol: My 79-year-old mother has mid-stage dementia . She lives with us but goes to adult day care every afternoon, which she enjoys. The problem is, when she gets home she’s forgotten where the bathroom and her bedroom are. Also, she has a favorite chair in the living room but she can’t seem to identify it without a lot of frustration. It’s like she’s never lived here even though she’s only been gone a few hours. When we try to help direct her, she resents it and says we’re bossy. Yet she doesn’t seem to mind when the people at the day care help her. How can we make her homecoming easier? Robert
Dear Robert: Change in general can be hard for someone with dementia since they rely on familiar surroundings to avoid confusion. As you’ve seen, even the few hours she is away from home can cause confusion when she returns. That doesn’t mean day care isn’t good for her. She’s socializing with peers which can be invaluable to her mental health , plus qualified people are caring for her and watching her for changes. Most importantly, she enjoys it.