Wandering In Dementia Patients

December 23, 2015

A patient with dementia can experience numerous side-effects with the condition. Memory loss may be one concern, but some patients experience wandering. Many dementia patients wander when they are in an unfamiliar place or setting. Sometimes the setting can be overwhelming due to noise from a tv or a crowded room full of people. People with dementia are often searching for something, but may not remember what they are searching for. They could be looking for a bathroom, something to eat or from boredom . Many dementia patients react to old memories and think they are going to work or the grocery store when they were younger.


Most wandering isn’t necessarily bad as long as the individual is in a safe environment. Make sure the house is well lit and rugs are removed so they don’t cause tripping. Put a gate in front of stairs to prevent falling. Most importantly, make sure doors cannot be unlocked to go outside. A deadbolt at the top of the door or door knob safety covers on door knobs will keep them safely in the house. Wanting to go home after a move to a new location is common and can be confusing. Many people just want to go home where things are familiar. Orient dementia patients to new surroundings by asking about their memories such as favorite hobbies or what they liked to grow in the garden or the yard.



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