Care Connection for Aging Services is joining a national campaign to make older adults and their caregivers aware of local resources to assist people with dementia.

Care Connection says The Home for the Holidays campaign is led by the Eldercare Locator and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association and Dementia Friendly America.

The annual campaign is a way to encourage families in discussing important issues affecting older Americans.

Part of goal is to enable older adults with dementia to stay connected to their communities and informed about services that can help them remain as independent as possible.

“The programs and services we offer keep Care Connection on the frontlines of helping older Americans live with dignity and independence in their homes for as long as possible, particularly as they navigate the complex landscape of living with dementia,” said Diana Hoemann, Executive Director of Care Connection. “Our participation in this national campaign reinforces the local impact of our work to ensure that older adults with dementia and their caregivers have a place to turn for support.”

Care Connection some tips to help with communicating with people with dementia:

•Greet people warmly even if you think they do not remember you. If they seem confused, remind them who you are.

•Slow the pace of conversation slightly and allow time for the person to process and respond.

•Speak clearly and calmly; be patient and understanding.

•Keep communication simple; ask one question at a time.

•Listen with empathy and seek to understand the person’s reality or feelings.

•Connect on an emotional level, even if conversation topics shift or do not make sense to you.

•Be aware of the person’s and your body language: smile, and make eye contact at eye level.

•Enjoy spending time with the person in the present moment.

•Offer hugs and hand-holding as appropriate.

•Avoid arguing with or embarrassing the person.

•Treat the person with dignity and respect.

An electronic copy of tips and details about dementia can be found here.