One way to keep yourself abreast of what research is happening for dementia and Alzheimer’s’ is reading almost anything that is research based. Hope you caught what I was discussing, but research based. There are many studies that are being tried, but the key important factor is to find articles that matter to your situation; however, we must understand that when we care for someone who has a neurological condition that we must be sensitive to them. Each person is different and this is where the five senses come to the forefront: tactile, olfactory, gustatory, visual and auditory.
According to Matthew Giobbi, Ph.D. there is Reminiscence Therapy and in several other articles Sensory Stimulation are two ways that could help patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s (neurological disorders).
Dr. Giobbi mentions the need to be sensitive to the patient that is receiving the therapy and in the choices of the items of the five senses that could be recalled. You do not want to agitate the patient in the process, but help them create or re-create their memories of something familiar. This is in hopes to have the person recollect the lost memories and create a comfort level for them when communicating to others.
When dealing with the senses, it can be therapy or stimulation; however, the key point is what Jennifer Wegerner stated:
“By drawing attention to a particular item, sensory stimulation encourages memories and responses of seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s.”
As caregivers who want to walk the right way toward helping our loved ones cause, we must consider even if they are or are not in therapy, that we can sometimes trigger something in our loved one and not even realize it. We need to be vigilant about our surroundings and remember that we must do things out of love while caring for our loved one.
Assignment: Take the time to read one of the articles below. They give such need formation about dementia and Alzheimer’s and our senses.
Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Get The 5 Senses Going!.” Alzheimers Care at Home. http://alzheimerscareathome.com/2012/09/alzheimers-disease-and-dementia-get-the-5-senses-going/
Giobbi, Ph.D., Matthew. “Five Senses of Reminiscence Therapy.” Livestrong.com. 14 Aug 2013. http://www.livestrong.com/article/514955-the-five-senses-of-reminiscence-therapy/ (accessed May 4, 2014).
Wegerner, Jennifer. “How Sensory Stimulation Can Help Alzheimer’s Patients.” Alzheimers.net. 23 Jan 2014. http://www.alzheimers.net/2014-01-23/sensory-stimulation-alzheimers-patients/ (accessed May 4, 2014)