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Living with Dementia

Caring for people with dementia Wandering and safety

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Wandering and safety

People with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias may become confused in regard to time and place. This might include getting “lost” in a very familiar neighbourhood, being unable to find their way home or being unable to recall how they arrived at a location. A person living with dementia may also have challenges identifying the correct day, week, month or year.
 
Wandering is a significant safety risk as the person may leave home and be unable to find their way back. They can become disoriented, anxious and afraid. It’s important to take appropriate, proactive steps to build a safety plan. This can help reduce the risk of wandering overall and increase the chances of a safe return home in the event the person may wander.

Take preventative measures and create a safety plan

Review tips to prevent wandering and learn how to make a safety plan
 
Additional resources are available online that can provide you with a helpful overview.
 
Read more on wandering and dementia
The Alzheimer's Association provides more information and helpful tips on wandering and dementia.
Visit their website:  www.alz.org/care/alzheimers-dementia-wandering.asp
 
Alberta Health Services Home Care can talk to you about safety
This program is in place to assist people living in their homes and their family members who may require additional medical or physical assistance. You can access the Community Care or Home Care program through a referral from your family physician. Contact the Community Care Access or Home Care program with questions.
Call (403) 943-1920
Visit their website. www.albertahealthservices.ca/4482.asp
 
Talk to someone. Our registered social workers are available to speak to you directly regarding your unique questions and concerns related to safety in the home. 
 
Register with the Safely Home® program
This is a national program available to Canadian families due to a partnership between MedicAlert® and the Alzheimer Society of Canada. It is an identification program that assists a person in returning home safely should they become unable to communicate with first responders or recall their personal information for any reason. 
Please contact MedicAlert® at 1-855-581-3794 or the Alzheimer Society of Canada for further details. 
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Be prepared for an emergency

Learn what to expect in the event your loved one wanders / goes missing. And be prepared ahead of time to answer the questions of police or emergency responders.

Read our blog post here

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