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How to Find a Missing Person with Dementia

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Megan Evans

Updated: Jan 19, 2024 05:46 pm

3 min read

Dementia is a challenging condition that affects millions of people worldwide. One of the most distressing aspects of dementia is when a person goes missing, as their behavior can be counter-intuitive and unpredictable. It is crucial to understand the patterns and behaviors associated with dementia patients in order to effectively track and locate them.

In this article, we will explore the symptomatic behaviors of a person with dementia and provide valuable insights on how to find a missing person with dementia.

track missing person with dementia

The Symptoms of a Person with Dementia

Dementia is a progressive disease that affects cognitive abilities, memory, and behavior. It is important to understand the symptomatic behaviors of a person with dementia in order to effectively track them when they go missing. Here are some key symptoms to be aware of:

Cognitive Decline

A key sign of dementia is a decline in cognitive function. People with dementia may have difficulty remembering recent events, face difficulties in making decisions, and experience confusion. This cognitive decline can contribute to their disorientation when they wander off.


Wandering is a common behavior in individuals with dementia. They may wander aimlessly, often without a clear sense of direction or purpose. This can pose a significant challenge when trying to locate a missing person with dementia.

Poor Decision-Making

Dementia affects a person's ability to make rational decisions. When they go missing, they may make poor decisions that put them in dangerous situations. It is essential to consider this when devising search strategies.

old man with dementia

Fear and Anxiety

Fear and anxiety can play a significant role in the behavior of a person with dementia. When they feel lost or disoriented, fear can hijack their executive functioning, leading them to make self-defeating decisions. It is important to approach them with empathy and understanding.

How to Find a Missing Person with Dementia

Finding a missing person with dementia requires a systematic approach that takes into account their unique behaviors and limitations. Here are some effective strategies to track a missing person with dementia:

1. Track Missing Persons with Dementia with Location Tracking Tool

One of the most distressing situations for a family is when a loved one with dementia goes missing. The fear and anxiety that arise from not knowing their whereabouts can be overwhelming. However, technology has provided a solution to this problem in the form of tracking apps like KidsGuard Pro.

kidsguard pro

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KidsGuard Pro is a powerful and reliable tracking application that can be used to locate missing persons, including those with dementia. It offers numerous features that make it an effective tool for tracking and ensuring the safety of your loved ones. With this professional location tracker, you can check the location and movement of dementia people in real time.

kidsguard pro demo

  • Real-time GPS Location Tracking: You can track other’s movements and pinpoint their exact location in real time.

  • Geofencing: It allows you to set up virtual boundaries on a map. When the person crosses these boundaries, you will receive an instant notification on your device.

  • Call and SMS Monitoring: You can monitor the person's incoming and outgoing calls, as well as their text messages. This can provide valuable information about their contacts and potential whereabouts.

  • Remote Control: Using this app, you can access to other's phone from your own device, and take screenshots, record phone calls, and even turn on the camera remotely. These features can aid in gathering evidence and providing additional information when searching for a missing person with dementia.

  • Stealth Mode: KidsGuard Pro operates in stealth mode, which ensures that they won't tamper with or uninstall the app, allowing you to track them continuously.

2. Mobilize a Search Party

Time is of the essence when a person with dementia goes missing. Mobilize a search party as soon as possible to cover a larger area and increase the chances of finding them. It is crucial to involve not only search and rescue teams but also members of the community who may come across the missing person.

3. Understand Counter-Intuitive Behavior

Dementia patients often exhibit counter-intuitive behaviors when they wander off. They may venture into thick brush or briars, seeking relief in places that seem inaccessible. Understanding these patterns can help guide search efforts in the right direction.

4. Water Can Be a Draw

Water can be a significant attraction for individuals with dementia. After navigating through obstacles, they may find solace when encountering ponds, lakes, streams, or rivers. It is important to search these areas carefully, as they may perceive water as a safe, flat surface to walk on.

5. Lack of Response to Searchers

Dementia patients often fail to respond to searchers' shouts or calls for help. They may be living in the present moment, unaware of their surroundings. It is crucial for search teams to remain vigilant and thoroughly scan the area, even if the missing person does not respond to their presence.

6. Use Familiarity as a Guide

Moderate cases of dementia may result in the person trying to find their way around a familiar neighborhood, despite believing they are in a different location. Familiar-looking features can guide their movements, so it is important to consider their past and search areas that they may find comforting or recognizable.

FAQs about Tracking a Missing Person with Dementia

Q1. How long do most missing persons with dementia stay within a certain radius?

According to research by Robert Koester, three-quarters of people with dementia who go missing are found within a mile and a half of their original location.

Q2. What are the chances of finding a missing person with dementia within 24 hours?

Based on Koester's data, 95% of people with dementia who are found within 24 hours of going missing are still alive.

Q3. How can I approach a person with dementia when I find them?

Approach them with a calm and friendly demeanor, speaking slowly and using short, easy-to-follow sentences. Allow them time to gather their responses and look for any medical identification that may provide helpful information.


Finding a missing person with dementia requires a comprehensive understanding of their behaviors and limitations. With some effective search strategies, like using KidsGuard Pro, we can work towards ensuring the safety and well-being of those affected by dementia.

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By Megan Evans

A certified content marketing specialist with great passion for Internet and online safety. She is bent on educating the audience about cyber safety tips and tricks.

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