Now that summer is here, you may want (or need) to travel with a loved one with Alzheimer’s. In the early stages of Alzheimer’s, your loved one can still travel, but it’s important to plan ahead to minimize stress. Traveling with a person who has Alzheimer’s can have its challenges, but with these tips, you can be more prepared for some traveling obstacles that may come your way.
Bring Important Documents and Medication
Traveling with a person who has Alzheimer’s can become easier if you bring his or her insurance information, list of current medications and dosages, emergency contact information, doctors names and contact information and a list of food or drug allergies. Get in the practice of having your loved one wear an identification bracelet that includes their name, your name and number and contact information for at least one other family member who can be notified in the case of an emergency. While you are traveling, bring a recent photo of your loved one so that you can show people what they look like just in case they wander off and get lost.
Try to Keep Routines Similar
Those who are affected by Alzheimer’s generally have the tendency to thrive on following a consistent routine and feeling in control of their environment. If possible, try to maintain a similar schedule during vacation that mirrors their typical day-to-day schedule. For instance, try to implement a familiar meal and bedtime routine and bring some comforting and recognizable items from home.
Travel During a “Good” Time of Day
Travel during the time of day when your loved one is the most active, alert, and in a good mood. If your loved one is the most alert in the mornings, travel during the morning and try not to plan a multitude of activities the first night you arrive at the destination. Caregivers know the patterns of their loved ones, so the time of day when your loved one is at his or her best can depend on each person and situation.
Plan for Special Accommodations
Before you embark on your trip, you can plan to have special accommodations for your family member who has Alzheimer’s. If you and your loved one are flying on a plane, discuss your situation with the airline ahead of time so that they can look into arranging an escort to and from the gate or a wheelchair for your loved one to use. Also, speak on the phone beforehand with the hotel(s) along the way and discuss the special services that will be needed.
Make Time for Rest
Trips can easily become filled with sightseeing, adventures, and events. While a packed schedule might work well for a younger crowd, this type of schedule may cause fatigue, stress, and anxiety for your loved one who has Alzheimer’s. Remember that it is healthy to schedule time to rest and relax.
With these tips, you can safely travel with your loved one. Want more travel tips? Our team of memory care experts can give you advice on travel, care, assisted living and more – contact us for more information.
Martin Luther Campus is part of the Ebenezer family of Lutheran Senior Care Communities. We provide transitional care and assisted living apartments for seniors in Bloomington and Richfield. We also have adult day clubs and memory care programs for seniors living at home. We’re located at 1401 East 100th St. Bloomington, MN. Are you interested in transitioning to assisted living or do you have a loved one that needs assisted living? Call Amy at 952-948-5167 for more information and to schedule a tour today.
Director of Community Relations
Hello friends, my name is Kate and I'd love to share with you ALL of the wonderful things happening at Martin Luther Campus. Be sure to check our Blog, Lifestyle page and Facebook page often to stay updated on the happenings at our community!