I recently met with a family who were struggling to find places to visit with their father who had recently been diagnosed with Dementia. A few months before he had been banned from his local supermarket due to him being disruptive on previous visits. I wondered if others have experienced this? I was saddened to hear a company had banned someone and showed lack of awareness of Dementia. However, how do staff know if someone has dementia?
Despite the many campaigns, is there still a lack of understanding?
After talking with this family, I thought I would share some tips when going out and about with a loved one living with Dementia:
Talk to local shops you know your loved one will visit on their own. Maybe even give a photo which they can keep in the office in case there are any issues.
There are identify schemes that will hold a source of information in case of emergencies. They come as bracelets, necklaces or cards in a wallet
If going to cafes and restaurants, talk to the staff when you arrive, or even call ahead. You can request a quieter table and they will prioritise your meal if you ask and they have enough notice.
Maybe check places out in advance - check the facilities, parking, quiet times to visit
Check to see if there are any discounts for older people or people with disabilities.
Go careful, if visiting old haunts. Some people living with Dementia aren't able to tolerate noise or very busy places.
Be mindful of how long your relative or friend is able to tolerate being away from their home environment. You may only be able to do short trips.
I hope some of the above tips help and I would be interested to hear other peoples experiences.