Alzheimer's Aggression

As Alzheimer's disease progresses, the skills about how to react or respond to situations or events, become increasingly disorganized or inappropriate. The person may misperceive their surroundings and attempt a course of behavior which they believe is appropriate. Sometimes this is an aggressive act. Sometimes there may seem to be definite reasons for aggression, at other times not. Sometimes the event is simply the result of the disease process.

It can however be useful to note down when aggression occurs. Patterns can sometimes be distinguished that are not always obvious without a record. A record can also help to forewarn other caregivers of potentially problematic issues and can more clearly focus treatment interventions. I used simple ABC charts to assess, ‘A' the lead up or location of the aggression, ‘B' a description of the actual behavior and ‘C' what happened after the aggression.

For example, during lunch Joe shouted and threw his plate across the table. As a consequence he upset others at the table so was moved away. We wondered whether it was the content of the meal, or whether Joe preferred his own company? But he threw his plate even when by himself. Joe was passed the point of communicating with us in the normal fashion, but some days no plate throwing occurred. It took some time but eventually we narrowed the cause of plate-throwing to gravy. Once gravy was withheld, the throwing stopped.

Source: Health Central