A person with dementia may be at risk for wandering

Alzheimer's disease destroys brain cells responsible for memory, thinking and behavior. As a result, people living with Alzheimer’s or a related disorder may become disoriented and lost, even in their own neighborhood or places that are familiar to them – this is known as wandering. Due to confusion, individuals with Alzheimer’s who wander are often unable to ask for help, leaving them vulnerable to weather, traffic and those who prey on the less fortunate, for more information visit the Alzheimers Association website.

A person with dementia may be at risk for wandering if he or she:

  • Comes back from a regular walk or drive later than usual
  • Tries to fulfill former obligations, such as going to work
  • Tries or wants to "go home" even when at home
  • Is restless, paces or makes repetitive movements
  • Has a hard time locating familiar places like the bathroom, bedroom or dining room
  • Acts as if doing a hobby or chore, but nothing gets done (moves around pots and dirt without actually planting anything)
  • Acts nervous or anxious in crowded areas, such as shopping malls or restaurants
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