Making the most out of a visit to the doctor involves effective two-way communication. You can contribute a great deal to the conversation—and outcome—by coming prepared, asking questions and listening to the treatment plan.
FAQ: Resistance in Going to the Doctor
Q. My mother says she no longer wants to stay in the assisted living facility where she has been living for approximately one year. How do I deal with her desire to move?
A. Several of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease are at work here. Since one of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease is impaired judgment, your wife may not understand how important it is for her see the doctor. In addition, it is difficult to rationalize with individuals with dementia, so logical arguments are unlikely to be successful. Rather, it can be more helpful to be creative, calm and reassuring, even when it is not easy.
One possible intervention is to pair a doctor’s visit with an enjoyable activity, such as lunch or a movie. Taking her out first can put her in a more positive frame of mind, which could aid in her willingness to see the doctor on the way back. Associating visiting the doctor with a more pleasant event can be helpful in making your wife feel safe. Building trust is imperative for her to feel supported and encouraged during a difficult time.