Management of Dementia-Related Behavioral Disturbances: A Nonpharmacologic Approach

Dee L. Carlson, Kevin C. Fleming, Glenn E. Smith, Jonathan M. Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


To describe practical nonpharmacologic approaches to dementia-related behavioral problems for enhancement of the function and care of elderly patients with dementia. We reviewed the pertinent medical literature and summarized strategies and available resources for management of geriatric patients with dementia and behavior problems. For optimal care of older patients with dementia, key concepts of related behavior problems must be understood. Agitation and aggression, resisting help with care, wandering, incontinence, sleep disturbance, and emotional lability can become difficult management issues with such patients. In some patients, these disruptions can lead to overmedication and nursing borne placement. Herein, practical nonpharmacologic measures for management of behavior problems that arise among community-dwelling and institutionalized elderly patients with dementia are discussed. Attention is directed to the medical, psychologic, environmental, and social factors that may contribute to unwanted behaviors. Nonpharmacologic approaches can help ameliorate behavioral problems and assist in the overall care of elderly patients with dementia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1108-1115
Number of pages8
JournalMayo Clinic proceedings
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1995


  • AD
  • Alzheimer's disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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