35 things that may cause people with dementia (and you) to become uncooperative, upset, angry, anxious or “aggressive”
portrait of a aggressive crying man with a clenched fist, open mouth snd grey full beard, concept for violence, hate and aggression

Are people who live with dementia sometimes uncooperative, upset, angry or even “aggressive?” Yes. But then again, so am I. If provoked, do people who live with dementia sometimes “lash out?” Yes. But then again, so do I, although extremely rarely in a physical way because I have other means to express my anger. If I didn’t have those means, who knows what I might do?

I don’t believe, in general, that responsive behaviour attributed to dementia is the result of whatever brain disease (e.g. Alzheimer) is causing it. I don’t believe it because people who don’t live with dementia, including me, would behave in the same ways under similar circumstances.

Many care partners, care workers, and medical professionals make the mistake of blaming the responsive behaviour of people who live with dementia on their disease. Jumping to this more-often-than-not erroneous conclusion means the root cause(s) of the behaviour remain(s) unknown.

Read more on My Alzheimer’s Story.

This is an external article from our library

Everyone is talking about caregiving, but it can still be difficult to find meaningful information and real stories that go deep. We read (and listen to and watch and look at) the best content about caregiving and bring you a curated selection.

Have a great story about care work? Use our contact form to submit it to us so we can share it with the community!

Related Articles

manic pixie dream world

manic pixie dream world

Rayne: Eliza, do you consider yourself mentally ill? Eliza: Rayne, at one time, I would have said I am extremely mentally ill. I no longer say that....

Popular categories

After Caregiving
Finding Meaning
Finding Support

Don't see what you're looking for? Search the library

Share your thoughts


Share your thoughts and experiences

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join our communities

Whenever you want to talk, there’s always someone up in one of our Facebook communities.

These private Facebook groups are a space for support and encouragement — or getting it off your chest.

Join our newsletter

Thoughts on care work from Cori, our director, that hit your inbox each Monday morning (more-or-less).

There are no grand solutions, but there are countless little ways to make our lives better.

Share your insights

Caregivers have wisdom and experience to share. Researchers, product developers, and members of the media are eager to understand the nature of care work and make a difference.

We have a group specifically to connect you so we can bring about change.