How to alleviate airport stress when travelling with someone with dementia

November 13, 2018

The holidays can be a stressful time. You may be traveling far distances, and dealing with traffic or a busy airport. If you’re caring for someone who has dementia, those typical travel anxieties can be even more taxing.

One way to alleviate stress now is to set realistic expectations about what’s possible for your holiday, and plan ahead with these four airport tips.

1. Pack an emergency bag.

This bag should include medications and current medical information like dosages, insurance information, a list of emergency contacts, a list of allergies, photocopies of important legal documents, and your travel itinerary. If you’re traveling by air, make this bag your carry-on and also include an extra set of clothing, snacks, and activities.

2. Keep a list of important contact information.

Have doctors’ names and contact information, as well as the names and contact information of friends and family members to call in case of an emergency.

4. Request a wheelchair.

Air travel can be confusing for someone with dementia. You’re going to want as little stress as possible! You might consider requesting a wheelchair (even if mobility is not an issue) so that an attendant can help you navigate the airport.

5. Look for a companion restroom.

Airports are crowded and distracting. A companion restroom ensures you do not have to leave the person unattended, and can make it easier to assist if they need help using the restroom.

Overall, when it comes to traveling with someone with dementia, the best rule of thumb is to go with the option that will cause the least amount of stress or anxiety (for you and them).

Happy holidays!

Have you taken a trip with someone with dementia? Share your advice for safe travel in the comments.

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