1. Try to stay calm and learn distraction techniques when periods of anxiety or frustration arise, i.e. ‘Sun Downing’, Personal Care, Outings.
2. Watch out for triggers when periods of anxiety arise, i.e. time of day, personal care routine, key people and words.
3. Encourage independence as much as safely possible, i.e. getting dressed, eating, toileting, food preparation, reading, singing and watching certain tv programs that trigger happy memories, or that do not require lengthy concentration periods.
4. Create a scrap book of old photographs, memories, people and holidays. Anything from the past that may bring back happy memories.
5. Go through the scrapbook, or an old picture book/magazine, as often as possible. This may be a distraction technique to help with periods of unrest and anxiety.
6. Remember the hobbies that were enjoyed and talk around them. Even get out old evidence of the hobby, i.e. a piece of knitwear that they knitted, woodwork that was created, garden herbs to smell that they enjoyed growing or music they used to singalong too.
7. Talk about family or friends and remind with photographs if available.
8. Talk about events or places that were of interest and enjoyment.
9. Encourage participation in certain roles, i.e. laying the table, cooking, peeling potatoes, washing up, potting plants and gardening.
10. Remember the person inside and try, when times are difficult, to bring that person out. They are still there, you may just have to dig a little to find them.