Published on: July 16, 2018
by The Advocate:
The root cause of behavioural outbursts in someone with Alzheimer’s disease is mostly due to the decline in the person’s language and communication skills. Outbursts also can be caused by an unmet need or needs. The affected person can no longer communicate with others in a sensible way and struggles to get his or her needs met. That frustration leads to behavioural outbursts.
Redirection helps but, even though it’s difficult, you must try to detect what the individual is trying to communicate. Finding that meaning could ease their stress and also help make care more manageable for you.
More often than not, behaviours are emotionally connected. He or she could be afraid, lonely, angry, excited or just bored. These emotions are very common and should always be validated by the caregiver to give that person comfort and security.
Additionally, the underlying cause of most aggressive behaviours is depression, which should be treated by a physician.
Behavioural outbursts also can be brought on by the expectations of the caregiver, who may assume the affected person can perform a task or function, and when they are unsuccessful, both parties grow anxious and irritated, which can cause behavioural expressions.
Outbursts can also be caused by physical distress. For instance, they might be suffering joint pain, have a headache, be constipated or simply suffering from fatigue, so you have to be vigilant about monitoring the individual’s well-being and observing even the most subtle changes in that person.
Also look at the environment. Is the room too cluttered? Are there too many visitors during the day? Is lighting casting shadows that can cause fear?
Whether the behavioural expressions are physically or emotionally connected, try to watch movements and actions, facial expressions and/or changes in the tone or volume of the person’s language to determine the unmet need. Use visual cues to assist in understanding particular needs. It might take trial-and-error to identify a need, however, finding that meaning is the key to not only easing the discomfort of the individual but also the stress on the caregiver.
The caregiver should be aware of his or her approach and use gentle, even tones in speaking and reassuring the affected person.
Here’s some of the “Best Brain Boosts” we’ve discovered to help women boost their brain health, providing a buffer against cognitive decline.
Thanks to the ongoing support of our partner Brain Canada, and The Citrine Foundation of Canada, Women’s Brain Health Initiative’s newest edition of MIND OVER MATTER has just been published. Loaded with interesting science-based articles, MIND OVER...
Men and women aged over 50 can reap similar relative benefits from resistance training, a new study led by UNSW Sydney shows. While men are likely to gain more absolute muscle size, the gains...
The material presented through the Think Tank feature on this website is in no way intended to replace professional medical care or attention by a qualified practitioner. WBHI strongly advises all questioners and viewers using this feature with health problems to consult a qualified physician, especially before starting any treatment. The materials provided on this website cannot and should not be used as a basis for diagnosis or choice of treatment. The materials are not exhaustive and cannot always respect all the most recent research in all areas of medicine.