Someone with dementia doesn’t always react the way that you might expect. That’s especially true if your senior has dementia and is also experiencing pain. She might not give you the information you need to respond appropriately to her pain.
Pain Isn’t Always Obvious
If your senior has dementia, she might be experiencing pain a lot more often than you realize. The cognitive changes that go along with dementia impact your senior in a variety of different ways. If she’s not able to share with you that she’s in pain, you might overlook that as a possible cause of some behaviors and responses.
Causes of Unnoticed Pain
Chronic health conditions that caused pain before dementia, like arthritis, can still create pain for your senior now. If she’s injured or she has surgery, she may also experience pain just like she would have without dementia. Any number of other situations that could create pain for your senior at any other time can do so now, too.
Learn Your Senior’s Pain Tells
Everyone has some sort of tell or cue when they’re in pain. Some people vocalize, even if they don’t use words. Your senior might also become aggressive or her body might stiffen up as pain occurs. She might grimace or make other faces that you aren’t able to decipher at first. Watch your elderly family member carefully to see if you are able to determine what her pain tells are.
Talk to Your Senior
Even if your senior is no longer verbal, you can still talk to her directly about how she’s feeling. Keep your questions short, simple, and direct. Ask her if she’s in pain or if she hurts. Pay attention to her reaction, especially if she doesn’t give you a verbal response to what you’re asking her.
Talk to Her Doctor
Talk to your senior’s doctor about what you can do to help her with the pain she’s experiencing. There may be treatments or medications you can try that help to manage the pain for her, especially if the pain is caused by a chronic health condition. Other solutions that might help could involve physical therapy, hot and cold treatments, and massage.
Working closely with elderly care providers can help you to learn much more about recognizing when your senior is experiencing pain. This can ensure that you respond much more quickly with solutions that can help to alleviate her pain.
If you or an aging loved one is considering elderly care in Denver, CO, please contact the caring staff at SYNERGY HomeCare Denver. Call today: (303) 756-9322.