Taking care of a person with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia can be a challenging affair. Their safety happens to be one of the most common challenges. Just a few minutes left unattended, Alzheimer’s patient can easily get into trouble without their knowledge. This is mostly because the disease is a neurodegenerative condition that consumes into their awareness. But thanks to technology, there are several monitoring systems for people with this type of disease. If you guessed right, door alarms are one of those systems. There are different types of door alarm monitors for people with Alzheimer’s. Some of these include customizable options to the individual’s and the caregiver’s needs. Most of them are mainly aimed at monitoring the patient’s movements. Here are some important pointers on what you should know about door alarms for Alzheimer patients.
Why Alzheimer’s Patients Need Special Door Alarms
Many research studies show that at least 6 out of 10 Alzheimer’s patients tend to wander and elope unintentionally. Some of them even get into cars and just drive, only to be found at the most absurd destinations. An Alzheimer’s patient can easily subject themselves to safety risks, which is something you don’t want as a caregiver. This is a major reason why special door alarms are needed for such patients to minimize and monitor their movements.
Additionally, keeping the doors locked to constrain an Alzheimer’s patient can create a fire hazard. They may be in great danger in case there’s a fire and they need to escape. Moreover, a dementia patient can easily get annoyed and frustrated when locked up, which is something you don’t want. This makes a door alarm a more appropriate and convenient alternative for such patients. With an alarm in place, a caregiver can also feel more at ease sleeping when living with someone with Alzheimer’s.
How Alzheimer Door Alarms Work
The door alarm’s main work is to sound an alarm whenever an Alzheimer patient tries to exit the room. Most of them comprise of a wristband on the patient and a transmitter at the doorway. Once the patient starts to wander within the room, the alarm sounds and they’re distracted from exiting. In case the person insists on exiting, caregivers are also alerted, making it easier to intervene. The transmitter in the wristband sends a signal to the receiver or magnetic stripe at the door upon detecting motion. For extra precaution, you can have several receivers or alarms for your home at various doors as well.
Common Types of Door Alarms for Alzheimer’s Patients
Some of the most common types available include string alarms, PIR, magnetic door, and floor sensor alarms. It pays to familiarize yourself with the various options available.
1) String Alarms:
String alarms produce an alert when the door is opened. Opening the door detaches the string from the magnet, triggering an alarm sound. The alarm stops when the monitor and string are attached back into position. This means that simply closing the door won’t necessarily stop the alarm.
2) Passive Infrared Alarms:
Also known as PIR alarms, passive infrared alarms are also triggered when the door is opened. They also go off once someone goes through the doorway. They can be used for both interior and exterior doors.
3) Magnetic Door Alarms:
This one is the most common option available. The alarm has two magnetically connecting parts. One of these parts attaches to the door frame and the other to the one to the door once the two parts disconnect, an alarm is triggered.
4) Floor Sensor Alarms:
These once use the combination of a sensor pad and a magnetic lock. The alarm can be triggered as soon as the door is opened or a few seconds afterward.
Programmable door alarm options are also available. These can be programmed to call the caregiver’s mobile phone once the patient starts wondering across the room.
Common Types of Alerts
The types of alerts given by door alarms for Alzheimer patients may vary with alarm type, brand, and model. However, chimes, melodies, and sirens are the most common alert types. Chimes are programmed to sound once, whereas alarm sirens tend to produce a prolonged alert. Whichever setting you choose, it’s all based on preference and the severity of your patient’s condition or their needs.
Without insisting any further, it is clear that door alarms for Alzheimer patients are of huge importance. They make it easier and more convenient for the caregiver to take care of their loved one or patient. They also make it safer for the Alzheimer’s patient.
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