When Your Loved One with Dementia is Hospitalized
Below is a list of tips that can help when
your loved one is in the hospital. Getting to
know the hospital health care team is a good
way to lower stress for you and your loved
one. It also helps the staff to get to know
your family member.
ξ Write down a usual day for your loved
one. Include daytime and bedtime
ξ Give a list of foods your family member
likes and dislikes. Include amount they
eat, special diets, and usual meal and
ξ Tell staff the best ways to avoid
upsetting your family member.
ξ Tell staff what helps if they become
confused and upset and what to do to
make them feel safe.
ξ Request a copy of, “Things I Would like
You to Know about me” from your
nurse. After it is filled out it will be
posted in your family member room.
ξ Write a list of things your family
member may need help with. For
example, toileting, getting out of bed,
brushing teeth, and using the phone.
ξ Make sure to bring family members
glasses, hearing aids, and dentures.
Make sure to label all items (or the
containers) with patient’s name.
ξ Bring non-valuable, well known items
from home that may be comforting.
Some ideas are: family photos, favorite
blanket, music player, music and/ or
ξ Visit often if you can. Think of asking
other family members to visit. Having a
well-known person in the room can be
calming, especially in a new place.
ξ Tell staff about any personal items
important to your family member that
they may look for such as a purse or
ξ The hospital is a new place to your
family member, let nursing staff know
the best way to help your loved one
when you leave.
ξ When your family member leaves the
hospital, it could take weeks to get used
to a new routine or to go back to their
ξ Tell staff how to best reach you if there
are changes or things they need to let
For information related to aging and living
with disabilities, find your local Aging and
Disability Resource Center (ADRC). These
are listed on the Wisconsin Department of
Health Services website:
The Alzheimer’s Association is a great
source of information. You can contact
them at 1-800-272-3900 or www.alz.org.
Alzheimer’s & Dementia Alliance of WI is
another great resource. You can contact
them at 1-888-308-6251 or
Your health care team may have given you this information as part of your care. If so, please use it and call if you
have any questions. If this information was not given to you as part of your care, please check with your doctor. This
is not medical advice. This is not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Because each
person’s health needs are different, you should talk with your doctor or others on your health care team when using
this information. If you have an emergency, please call 911. Copyright © 09/2017 University of Wisconsin Hospitals
and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#7999