Caregiving: 4 important tips when dealing with violent behavior

One of the most important tasks a caregiver has to take on is making sure that the atmosphere around the house is peaceful and stable. Learning how to create distractions can come in handy from time to time especially when situations get stressful or out of the ordinary. However, sometimes it may be extremely challenging to keep things in control especially when a given situation triggers explosive violent behaviors.

Violent behaviors in the care-receiver need close attention.  Although they can be out of plain frustration, they can also be linked to many important health related issues. Because of this a caregiver is responsible for keeping track of the when and with what intensity the episodes happen.  Medication and other clinical triggers may be the reason for the outburst of violence therefore taking the information to the doctor is crucial.

Other triggers for violent conduct may be:

·         Person demands a significant someone who is no longer there

·         Losing something they need

·         Visions

·         Hallucinations

·         Illusions

·         Others…

Caregivers must be firm and decisive when their care-receiver turns violent on them. There should not be any hesitation as to what is being said of how the situation is being handled.  It is normal to experience fear over the possibility of this person physically hurting us while they go on their violent frenzy.  Fear however, if you do not control it, will paralyze you. A rapid response is necessary to avoid this. Nevertheless, if the situation, despite all you tried escalates to a more aggressive scenario where your life or the life of your care-receiver is at stake, then you must call for help and stay away from the danger while help arrives.

Here are the 4 tips you must use when dealing with a violent care-receiver:

1-      Show a relaxed attitude. Speak softly and calmly. You can even put some relaxation music on and try to take the person for a walk hopefully out in nature.

2-      Never struggle physically with the person. You will make things much worse if you do.

3-       Learn to understand what triggers the episodes. Believe it or not even the need to go to the bathroom can be the reason for an outburst.

4-      Be sensitive to the situation. Understand that they are having it rough and you are there to help and counsel them.