When you have an elderly family member who begins to show symptoms of dementia, you may have him or her move in with you. While your ultimate goal should be to get your loved one into a care facility that specializes in dementia, he or she will at least be secure under your roof. You may, unfortunately, experience an incident in which this person goes missing from your home. Immediately upon discovering your family member's absence, there are several steps that you should take to increase the risk of his or her safe return, such as:
Call The Police
Don't shy away from calling the police about a missing family member with dementia, as this is a legitimate emergency. If the person has dementia, he or she may get into life-threatening situations without realizing it. For example, the person could walk into a body of water and drown, walk out onto the road and be hit by a car, or perhaps even travel to a bad part of town where someone may attempt to harm the person. Give the police your loved one's description, a rundown of his or her clothing, and when you last saw him or her.
Organize A Neighborhood Search Party
If you believe that your family member has only been gone from your home for a short time, he or she may still be nearby. You should immediately organize a neighborhood search party to look for the person. Have a family member go door to door to contact everyone you know in the neighborhood, and ask those people to contact others whom they know. Then, have people in groups of two begin to scour streets, alleys, yards, and parks to look for your family member. Make sure that everyone has a cellphone to call you with updates, and that each search party group has a description of your loved one.
Use Social Media
Write a synopsis of what is happening on his or her social media account, including photos of the family member. Post the update and ask your friends to share it with their online contacts. You can also tag your local news outlets and community organizations with the request that they share your post with their followers. Ideally, this strategy will quickly reach thousands of people who can be on the lookout for your loved one. Make sure to include your phone number so that people can call you with updates.
Contact a company like Wellspring Meadows Assisted Living for more information and assistance.