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How long does a meltdown last in a person with dementia?

By | October 21st, 2020

A good thing to know is that for humans who have healthy brains, when they are having a meltdown it takes 18 minutes to get past that to get out of that lizard brain, back into “okay I can hear again, I can breathe again, I can start to self-soothe”. For somebody whose brain is under attack with a neurodegenerative disorder, it’s going to take longer than 18 minutes. Part of it is some waiting it out the other thing is not doing anything to make it worse, don’t throw fuel on the fire so saying something like “I know how you feel” or “oh you shouldn’t be so upset”. Please don’t tell people how they should feel, let them feel. The frustration may be coming from not feeling heard prior to that point so sometimes the best thing is just back off, provide visual supervision, make sure they’re okay, and that they know “hey I’m here when you’re ready”

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