Plan for an enjoyable holiday shopping trip. Preparing for the trip should be just as enjoyable as the shopping trip itself. Dementia patients deal better with routines and careful planning. Make this a productive occasion. Let patient know of the impending trip, and encourage their participation in making shopping preparations. Validate the patient.

- Post a reminder note on a wall calendar with the shopping trip's date and time.

- Ask your aging loved one if she can help you select one of two stores to visit. Have your choices               ready. Don’t ask, “Where would you like to go shopping?” You may have to select one store if there is difficulty in making a choice. Make selections based on past choices and input from family and close friends.

- Make a short shopping list. Encourage participation in making the list.

- Keep trips close to the home or in a well-known neighborhood.

- Minimize falls while shopping. Wear comfortable shoes with good ankle and heel support.

- Keep away from busy and noisy malls. Loud noises, and strangers, may confuse and frustrate some dementia patients.

- Shop at smaller stores.

- Never leave a dementia patient alone during a shopping trip.

- Before starting your trip, identify parking, bathroom access, and store seating.

- Wrap gifts at home. Again, limit ribbon and wrapping paper choices for a less confusing activity. Have loved one help or assist in this fun activity.

 Stay positive and enjoy a safe shopping trip with your senior loved one this holiday season.


Ana PD Lane

 Senior Helpers of Orlando

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