Helping a family member with dementia deal with holiday stress

This can be a rough time of year for someone with dementia. All the noise and commotion, and the-now-unfamiliar faces can be very disorienting.

Brittany Mosser with the Alzheimer's Association of Western Washington says it's important to plan ahead -- especially if you're expecting out of town guests.

"Make them aware of how the person with memory loss is doing and what changes you've been noticing," she explained. "Also, make them very aware of what the plans are for the festivities, so everyone's expectations are the same."

Mosser suggests you try to maintain the normal routine as much as possible.

"Especially around getting ready in the morning and getting ready to go to bed at night," she said. "Try to keep the seam person helping the individual with dementia to get ready."

It's also important to simplify your holiday plans, especially if the person with dementia is living with you.

"So if you are hosting the dinner, focus on ways that you can have other people help support you," Mosser advises. "Have it be a potluck or have part of the meal catered or delivered from the grocery store."

If you need to talk to someone, the Alzheimer's Association's Helpline is available around the clock at 800.272.3900

More Info: Holidays and Alzheimer's: Tips to enjoy the season