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People with dementia will experience progression of their symptoms and behavior problems over time. Caregivers may need to adapt the following suggestions to individual situations:
Encourage exercise. Exercise benefits everyone, including people with dementia. The main benefits of exercise include improved strength and cardiovascular health.
Some research also shows physical activity may slow the progression of impaired thinking (cognitive) function in people with dementia.
Exercise can also lessen symptoms of depression, help retain motor skills and create a calming effect.
Establish a nighttime ritual. Behavior is often worse at night. Try to establish going-to-bed rituals that are calming and away from the noise of television, meal cleanup and active family members. Leave night lights on to prevent disorientation.
Limiting caffeine during the day, discouraging daytime napping and offering opportunities for exercise during the day may help prevent nighttime restlessness.
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