As a family caregiver for someone who is experiencing cognitive issues, it is essential to know the warning signs of wandering. The first thing to do is to create a personalized safety plan for your elderly loved one. One of the main parts of this plan would be to determine signs of whether your elderly loved one will wander.

Getting Restless

If you notice your elderly loved one is becoming restless or pacing around in their house, it is important to keep a closer eye on them. These could be signs that they might get the urge to wander off. In these cases, you might want to try to get your elderly loved one out in nature, take them shopping, or change up their daily routine. You can also have caregivers keep an eye on them if you can’t be there.

Trouble Finding Familiar Places

Sometimes, if your elderly loved one is having trouble finding familiar places, this could be a sign they might wander off. For instance, if they can’t seem to find their bedroom or the bathroom, they might go wandering to find these places. If you notice your elderly loved one is having issues finding particular rooms, try putting up signs that help them out. You or caregivers can help them find these places, too.

Always Wanting to Go Back Home

Have you noticed that your elderly loved one always wants to go back home, even when they are already home? If so, this could also be an indicator that they will wander off. It is important to speak with your elderly loved one’s doctor if you feel they have intentions to wander away. A medical professional will be able to help you with protecting your elderly loved one and keeping them safe. You can hire caregivers to help keep your elderly loved one safe, as well.

Asking Where Other People Are At

Many elderly people who wander off are looking for family members or friends. If your elderly loved one has been asking a lot of questions about where their family members or friends are, it could be another warning sign that they will wander off. It is okay to let your elderly loved one know the whereabouts of a family member or friend. However, just keep a close eye on them to ensure that they don’t go looking for those people.


Many people with Alzheimer’s or other cognitive issues often get agitated, frustrated, and antsy. They feel like they need to get up and move around. Some elderly people just want to find family or friends. They may wander off to look for these people. However, as a family caregiver, knowing the signs of wandering can help you to keep your elderly loved one safe and secure.


If you are considering caregivers in Weddington, NC for an aging loved one, please contact the caring staff at Golden Heart Senior Care of Charlotte. Call today: (704) 246-5806.