Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA) has provided important tips to families traveling with someone living with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia-related illness.
Their biggest message is that “traveling can still be enjoyable for families affected by Alzheimer’s, but adaptations may need to be made as the disease progresses.” It’s just a matter of taking a few simple steps in advance that will ensure the trip is easier, more comfortable and overall, more enjoyable for all.
Families and caregivers should consider the following tips from the AFA:
- Consult with the individual’s physician beforehand to make sure travel is advisable
- Advise the airline(s) and hotels of safety concerns and special needs.
- Inquire in advance with airports/train stations about security screening procedures so you can explain to your loved one in advance and reduce any potential anxiety.
- Plan the travel mode and timing of your trip in a manner that causes the least amount of anxiety and stress.
- Preserve the person’s routine as best as possible, including eating and sleeping schedules. This one is key as any unfamiliar changes can become overwhelming.
- Take regular breaks on road trips for food, bathroom visits, or rest. Encourage stretching on trains and airplanes.
- Bring snacks, water, activities and other comfort items.
- Bring comfortable layers and options of clothing that will adapt to climate changes.
- Consider utilizing an identification bracelet and/or tracking device on their person’s clothing.
- Take important health and legal-related documentation including a list of current medications and physician information with you.
The AFA urges all families with questions about traveling with someone who has a dementia-related illness to speak with a licensed social worker by calling their Helpline at 866-232-8484 or visiting www.alzfdn.org. The helpline is open seven days a week, from 9 am to 9 pm (ET) on weekdays and 9 am to 1 pm (ET) on weekends
If you think you and your loved one could benefit from some assistance during your vacation, Premier Home Health Care can provide a home health aide to accompany you and assist with your loved one’s needs. Just give us a call at 866-720-0124 or visit our website at http://www.premierhomehealthcare.com/