Reducing Stress-Related Behaviours in People with Dementia: Care-Based Therapy

Reducing Stress-Related Behaviours in People with Dementia: Care-Based Therapy

Reducing Stress-Related Behaviours in People with Dementia: Care-Based Therapy

Reducing Stress-Related Behaviours in People with Dementia: Care-Based Therapy

Synopsis

"This straightforward yet accessible book offers a comprehensive check-list of simple and imaginative ways to reduce and prevent stress-related behaviours in people with dementia, and keep them comfortable in their environment. Chris Bonner gives practical suggestions for dealing with some of the problems commonly faced by people with dementia, such as eating, toileting, wandering, sleep, agitation and aggression. He also provides techniques for stimulating memory, ideas for calming the environment, tips on improving communication and effective therapies for reducing stress levels. This book is an invaluable manual for care workers and the families and carers of people with dementia." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

This manual draws information from the literature, the numerous carers with whom I have worked, and personal experience in caring for and enjoying the company of people with dementia. It focuses on the concept of a progressively lowered stress threshold in Alzheimer's disease (Hall 1994). The concept specifically addresses Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of dementia. Issues relating to this concept may be particularly appropriate to Alzheimer's disease, but may also be applicable to other causes of dementia.

The fact that I am a clinical pharmacist authoring a book on the care of people with dementia may seem a little unusual, but I was initially motivated by my concern regarding the devastating effects of some medications traditionally used to modify behaviour in people with dementia. Not that drug therapy is contraindicated for this purpose in dementia. It needs, however, to be considered carefully, and appropriate care practices can dramatically reduce the reliance on psychotropic medications (Shelkey and Lantz 1998). If this manual makes sense despite my pharmacological perspective, all I can say is that the numerous carers I have worked with over the years have taught me well.

Many of the care initiatives offered in this manual are validated by research. Others are no more than suggestions. Some of the information may even be contradictory. Validated information means that we can expect the information to be appropriate in a significant number of settings. Suggestions mean that someone considers a certain practice might be effective, but the significance of the practice in improving overall care is unknown.

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