Question: There's a resident screaming all day and all night. All she says is, "This place is a prison. What a way to die. You are all holding me hostage!" No matter what we do or say, she doesn't listen. She's had medication changes and her mood hasn't improved. She doesn't believe her family knows she lives there no matter how many notes they leave, pictures fill her room, or how many times they visit. Any advice?

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Good question! Sorry I just saw this in my inbox, a few days late. So, I’ve had a resident or two like this. I’ve found that, while there’s no way to stop it entirely (besides time, when she eventually will move past this phase) that she was more prone to yelling when she was either too bored or too stimulated. I took to moving her outside of busy rooms but also giving her something to keep her occupied (folding towels, sorting socks) etc

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Rachael Wonderlin has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of two published books with Johns Hopkins University Press. She owns Dementia By Day, a dementia care consulting company.

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