“Be prepared for agitation and anxiety; have snacks, water, and distractions ready.”

—Melissa Batchelor, PhD, RN, FNP, FGSA, FAAN

Traveling with a loved one who has Alzheimer’s disease can be challenging, but with the right preparation, it can also be a smooth and enjoyable experience. In this episode, I provide five essential tips to help make your journey more comfortable and less stressful.

UTILIZE IN-FLIGHT ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS

Just like booking for an unaccompanied minor, using an in-flight assistance program can provide valuable help from the curb, through security, and onto the aircraft. This support ensures you and your loved one have a smoother experience.

MAKE SURE YOU STAY TOGETHER

When passing through airport security, go through first so you can assist your loved one from the other side if needed. This strategy helps prevent separation and ensures a seamless transition through security.

USE A COMPANION CARD

Carry a companion card to communicate your situation to TSA and flight attendants. This card informs them that you are traveling with someone who has Alzheimer’s, helping them provide the necessary support and understanding if agitation occurs.

FIND FAMILY RESTROOMS

Family restrooms are ideal for maintaining privacy and providing assistance. Whether you need to accompany your loved one or wait just outside the door, these facilities offer a safe and convenient option.

PREPARE FOR AGITATION AND ANXIETY

Travel can be unsettling for anyone, especially for those with Alzheimer’s. Be prepared with snacks, a filled water bottle, magazines, or pre-downloaded movies on your iPad. These items can help distract and calm your loved one during the trip.

By following these five tips, you’ll ensure a safer, more comfortable, and more enjoyable journey for both you and your loved one. See you next time as we continue to support each other on this journey.

RESOURCES

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About Melissa:

Melissa Batchelor, PhD, RN, FNP, FGSA, FAAN. I am a nurse, nurse practitioner, nurse educator and nurse researcher with over 25 years of experience in the aging and long-term care healthcare space. You can visit my website at MelissaBPhD.com to learn more about me, how you can work with me directly,
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