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Door Locks to Keep Dementia Patients Safe: My Top Picks

Introduction

Many people are finding themselves in the unfortunate position of having a second full-time job – that of taking care of someone who has some form of dementia.

Being a caregiver to people with dementia is not easy. It can be exhausting and highly stressful. Also, it takes a toll on your social life, energy, resources, and sometimes, it can be detrimental to your own health. 

Luckily, you are not alone. If a recent study by the University of California is anything to go by, then we can confidently say that there are many other people in similar situations and with little or no community resources to assist them.

The Safety Concern

One of the biggest worries for caregivers is the safety of people living with a form of dementia. Even though dementia affects people differently, disorientation and confusion are common and pose a severe safety concern.

As such, your loved one could easily find themselves wandering, and they could get lost. Also, this could be a cause of worry for neighbors and the police department if they are summoned frequently. It is, therefore, crucial to find the most effective in-home dementia safety strategies and make sure you are home at all times in case of an emergency.

If the person you are taking care of is a wanderer, there are a few things you can do to reduce safety risks proactively. They include:

  • Have them wear an ID Bracelet with their full name, address, and your phone number
  • Keep car keys out of sight
  • Alert your trusted friends and neighbors that this person may wander. Ensure they have a number they can contact you with when they see them outside.
  • Put “STOP” signs on doors on all exit points

Apart from taking the above measures, perhaps the safest and most effective thing you can do is to install door locks that keep dementia patients safe.

Best Door Locks for Dementia Patients

Here are some of the best door lock options that will work for you:

Schlage Connect Touchscreen Door Lock

Price excl. shipping / Last update on 2022-12-05 at 10:27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

A touchscreen door lock is a fantastic choice if you need a keyless door lock that will serve you for a long time without wearing out while keeping your dementia patient safely locked in.

This door lock has a fingerprint-resistant screen that is made to resist wear. It uses Z-Wave technology to connect to other smart home systems. Also, this modern door lock integrates with Amazon Alexa as long as you connect it with a smart home hub.

With this cutting-edge technology, you will be able to keep your dementia patient safe and be able to remotely unlock the door at your discretion whenever you want him/her to get out of the room.

Kwikset Belleview Handleset

SAVE $9.40

Price excl. shipping / Last update on 2022-12-05 at 10:27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

This is a stylish, yet effective door lock that you can use to keep your loved one from wandering. Thanks to the fact that it is an elegant piece of art, this is a lock that should feature in your front door. It comes with an arched handle and a deadbolt that allows exterior access.

This lock might not be the best in terms of security considering that it is a Grade 3 ANSI residential lock, but since it uses the Kwikset Smart key mechanism and being a deadbolt-only door lock, you can have a good night sleep knowing that your loved one living with dementia will not find his way out of your jurisdiction.

Kwikset Powerbolt 2 Keyless Entry Deadbolt

SAVE $15.13

Price excl. shipping / Last update on 2022-12-05 at 10:27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Sometimes, you may lock the door, but lose the keys and put your loved one in danger! To minimize this risk, invest in one of the best keyless door locks – Kwikset Powerbolt 2 keyless entry Deadbolt.

The lock is armed with a 6-button keypad, which can be programmed with up to six special user codes. With a one-touch lock button, you can secure the doors and rest assured that your dementia patient will not find a way out unless you allow him to.

This product is not a smart door lock; hence, you don’t need to connect it to your smart home systems. It operates on four AA batteries, and reviewers in multiple have zero complaints about the battery life.

The keyless deadbolt door lock also features an auto-lock feature, which you can switch off or customize during installation. This is a lock that will undoubtedly give you value for your money while keeping your loved one safe.

AmazonBasics Entry Knob with Lock and Deadbolt

SAVE $2.24

Price excl. shipping / Last update on 2022-12-05 at 10:27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

As a caregiver, the condition of your patient might have ‘chewed up’ all your resources, and you are now looking for a budget lock that will prevent them from eloping. The AmazonBasics Entry Knob with lock and Deadbolt is, without a doubt, one of the best locks you can invest in without having to break the bank.

Perhaps the most critical aspect of this lock is that it comes in two sets of door locks and handles. This means that you can install the best doorknobs and deadbolts on the front door, and the bedroom door of your dementia patient. 

Even though this lock doesn’t have the ultra-modern features found in its premium counterparts and doesn’t have an ANSI security rating, the reviews it enjoys in multiple review and eCommerce sites is overwhelming. For a very small outlay, you should be able to ensure that a dementia patient prone to wandering is kept safe.

Door Reinforcement Lock Child Safety Door Security Lock with 4 Screws

Price excl. shipping / Last update on 2022-12-05 at 10:27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

This door lock is a really simple solution that doesn’t require any modification to your door or frame. It operates as a simple deadbolt solution, no key is required the lock is disengaged by simply sliding and pulling the lock. There’s a bit of a knack to this which is why it’s suitable for stopping dementia sufferers and children from unlocking it.

Conclusion

Before you invest in any of the above locks, you should know that most people treasure their independence. It is not a surprise, therefore, that some adults with a form of dementia might resist changes that make them feel as though they are being deprived of their independence. This makes approaching the wandering concern a vicious cycle for caregiver, but one that should be taken with the seriousness it deserves.

Prior to installing a door lock, let your patient know why he must be kept inside. Simply put, give him a sense of ownership in the decision-making process, even though he might not be in a position to make sound decisions. This way, you will be able to implement your plans better.

Howard

6 thoughts on “Best Door Locks For Dementia Patients”

  1. Hi Im hoping you might be able to suggest something for my Mom. She bolts the front door as this makes her feel safe and we would like to have something she can bolt from the inside that can be undone by a selected number of people, carers and family in the event she falls, so we can get access from outside if needed. Any suggestions please would be greatly appreciated. Many thanks. Simon

    1. Hi Simon,

      I don’t think there’s a simple bolt solution that allows both indoor and outdoor operation. You could install a smart lock or keypad operated lock which would allow your Mom to lock from the inside and carers etc to be given a code or smartphone access.

      A simpler solution is what I have done with my parents – a normal key operated night latch and then a secure code operated box outside the house which you can give carers/family code access to.

      Either of these solutions could be added in addition to the lock you already have fitted if it gives your Mom more peace of mind.

      I hope that helps!

      Howard

    2. Hello, do you know if the Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt can be setup so that it cannot be unlocked from the inside but only from the outside or from a smartphone?

      Thanks

  2. A very good approach to help us who takes care of a dementia person.

    Of course, it is exhausting and highly stressful, takes energy. I loved your tips to reduce safety risks. Wearing my grandfather an ID Bracelet with his full name, address, and my phone number. To secure him, I think Schlage Connect Touchscreen Door Lock is the best choice for me. He never goes out :).

    Can you let me know any locksmith who can install this lock on my door?

  3. Do you know of a lock for an outward swinging storm door. I have the main doors taken care of, but thinking ahead to summer when the main door is open and the storm is closed. I don’t have air conditioning. So like my back door open with the screened storm door closed.

    Thank you
    Lorraine

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