Users who purchase and register their SafetyAnchor, login from here to monitor safety of their loved ones remotely. Also security staff at organizations such as cities and universities who register with Safety Labs remotely manage security after login.
You cannot watch your loved ones all the time and you cannot lock them or tether them in confined spaces as they need to be move around freely, so how to keep your loved one from wandering while giving them the freedom and space to live their lives. Here are some practical Tips:
Use Company - Best wandering prevention tip is that the person likely to wander remains in company of a caregiver, so if the dementia patient wanders, the caregiver can accompany them or prevent them from wandering. Since this is not always possible below are other suggested ways to prevent wandering.
Increase Physical Activity – Daily physical activity of the person with dementia or autism helps prevent patient elopement. A regular supervised walk, in a shopping centre or a park provides a necessary break for the caregiver and the person with Dementia. If there is a worry that the patient may wander away when out on excursion use Safety Labs' button which wirelessly tethers to your smart phone and will alert when patient elopement happens. See how Anchor-WP may help during excursions.
Focus on sleep hygiene. Inadequate sleep is associated with some patient wandering conditions. So a good sleep regiment should be practiced with your loved one. For example have her on a regular schedule of going to bed and to waking up. Reducing day time napping and cutting out caffeinated drinks during later parts of the day would prevent night time wandering
Understand the underlying causes of wandering/elopement. In many cases, a loved one’s wandering may have a simple reason, for example the person becomes agitated and wanders, maybe triggered by something simple – like being thirsty or hungry at night. Leaving a glass of water and snacks by the bed side would help. In many cases changes in routine trigger wandering - hence maintaining routines are important. The overstimulation of activities, noise from humans or thunder/lightning can trigger patient wandering. To reduce wandering in such scenarios maintain contact with the individual, reassure them and keep them engaged in activities, soft background music or a favorite movie will help.
Prepare your home to prevent wandering – Many times wandering is due to a person searching for stimulation. In such a case a minimal barrier will deter wandering behaviour. This includes fencing the home; Person with Dementia must be allowed to roam freely inside and outside so fence your home and secure the gates. Secure the exits - Use child proof door knobs and dead-bolts. Place the dead-bolts high up so they are difficult to reach. Place warning bells on the exit door as a door alert. Put a "Do Not Enter" sign on the outside door, facing in. These simple tips work wonders in preventing wandering.
Sew Identification – Although does not prevent wandering identification is important for safe return of the wandered person. Attach or Sew person’s identification with return address and phone number. This will increase the safety if the person wanders away. Safety Labs button in case of wandering also forms as a electronic ID which can be scanned by authorities up to 100m aiding in faster search and rescue.
Start Immediate Search – get help of friends and neighbours. Search should start as soon as the wandering occurs– many technologies provide such alerts. Anchor-WP Safety Labs immediately informs using any one of selected channel – SMS, Smart phone notification.
Call 911 – In case, search does not lead to finding the wandered person, call 911.
More detailed steps for what to do on wandering are found in another related article.