Margit Gausdal Strandenæs et al. | Experiences of attending day care services designed for people with dementia – a qualitative study with individual interviews | Aging and Mental Health | Published online 27th March 2017
Objectives: Day care is assumed to promote independence in home-dwelling people with dementia, increase well-being and enhance social stimulation. Few studies have directly engaged people with dementia to better understand the benefits and impacts of such services. The aim of this study was to explore attendees’ experiences with day care designed for people with dementia.
Method: This study had a qualitative descriptive design and included individual interviews with 17 users attending day care. The analysis was undertaken using content analyses.
Results: The participants reported that day care had a positive influence on their physical functioning, cognition, well-being, and situation at home because they were provided with social stimulation, meals, and activities. Day care contributed to the maintenance of a rhythm and structure in everyday life. Furthermore, the staff contributed to making the day care a safe place to be and enhanced a sense of belonging.
Conclusion: This study reveals the positive impact of day care on the daily lives of people with dementia because this service contributes to the enhancement of activities and social support, prevents isolation, and enhances practical and cognitive functioning as experienced by the users. The staff has a major impact on the experience of the participants in the day care.
Clarke, A.C. et al. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. Published online: 7 February 2017
Objective: Depression and anxiety are common in dementia. There is a need to develop effective psychosocial interventions. This study sought to develop a group-based adapted mindfulness programme for people with mild to moderate dementia in care homes and to determine its feasibility and potential benefits.
Conclusions: The intervention was feasible in terms of recruitment, retention, attrition and acceptability and was associated with significant positive changes in quality of life. A fully powered randomised controlled trial is required.
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Farina, N. et al. Alzheimer’s & Dementia. Published online: 3 February 2017
Introduction: Family carers of people with dementia are their most important support in practical, personal, and economic terms. Carers are vital to maintaining the quality of life (QOL) of people with dementia. This review aims to identify factors related to the QOL of family carers of people with dementia.
Discussion: The quality and level of evidence supporting each theme varied. We need further research on what factors predict carer QOL in dementia and how to measure it.
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Social health in dementia. Towards a positive dementia discourse | Marjolein de Vugt and Rose-Marie Dröes | Aging & Mental Health Vol. 21 , Iss. 1,2017
A shift in focus from symptoms and disability towards the capacity and potential of the person with dementia is urgently needed to create a more balanced view of dementia and a more dementia-friendly society, which enables people and their families to adapt to the changes dementia brings in their lives.
The new concept of social health suggested by Huber and colleagues seems helpful to make such a shift. In this dedicated special issue, a consensus-based operationalization of the concept of social health in dementia is proposed and several aspects of social health and related dementia care are addressed within the framework of European collaborative projects of the INTERDEM network.
(2016). Cancer Nursing Practice. 15(9) pp. 43-43
When did you last see a ‘twiddlemuff’? Delegates at a recent emergency and nursing trauma care conference in Barcelona, reported in Emergency Nurse, were told that brightly decorated twiddlemuffs, also known as fiddle mitts, had improved life for dementia patients
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Nauha, L. et al. Dementia. Published online: October 20 2016
The aim of this study was to assess in practice whether assistive technologies support and facilitate the work of a family caregiver or care staff, and whether these technologies support the independence of a person with a memory disorder.
A comprehensive set of supportive devices and alarm systems were experimentally tested in the care of five test subjects in an assisted living facility by eight nurses, and in the care of four test subjects in a home environment by three family caregivers and one care team. Questionnaires, diaries and logged data were used to evaluate the benefits of the devices. Simple aids and alarm systems that did not need much adjusting were considered most useful by caregivers and nurses, though multiple false alarms occurred during the test period. Technical connection problems, complex user interface, and inadequate sound quality were the primary factors reducing the utility of the tested devices.
Further experimental research is needed to evaluate the utility of assistive technologies in different stages of a memory disorder.
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Millenaar, J. et al. Aging & Mental Health. Published online: 27 September 2016
Background: Promoting adaptation, improving well-being and maintaining an optimal quality of life (QOL) is an important aspect in dementia care. The purpose of this study was to identify determinants of QOL in young onset dementia, and to assess differences in QoL domains between people with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD).
Methods: In total 135 persons with AD and 58 persons with FTD were included from two prospective cohort studies. QOL was assessed with the proxy reported quality of life in Alzheimer’s disease questionnaire (QoL-AD). Possible determinants were explored using multiple linear regression and included sociodemographic variables, diagnosis, dementia severity, disease awareness, neuropsychiatric symptoms, met and unmet needs and hours of personal and instrumental care. Differences between QOL domains in people with AD and FTD were calculated using Mann-Whitney U tests.
Results: Lower QOL was associated with more depressive symptoms, lower disease awareness, and a higher amount of needs, both met and unmet. People with AD scored lower on the memory and higher on the friends’ subscale. No differences were found for the other items.
Conclusion: This study demonstrates a unique set of determinants of QOL in AD and FTD. Interventions directed towards these specific factors may improve QOL.
Read the abstract here
ScienceDaily. Published online: 25 July 2016
Results from a study of patients with a diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment or early dementia indicates that their outlook isn’t as dark as expected.
A group of scientists from the University of Kentucky’s Sanders-Brown Center on Aging asked 48 men and women with early dementia or mild cognitive impairment (MCI) a series of questions about their quality of life and personal outlook post-diagnosis.
Called the Silver Lining Questionnaire (SLQ), the instrument measures the extent to which people believe their illness has had a positive benefit in areas such as: improved personal relationships, greater appreciation for life, positive influence on others, personal inner strength and changes in life philosophy. The SLQ has been administered previously to patients with cancer diagnoses, but hasn’t been given to MCI/dementia patients, according to Gregory Jicha, MD, PhD, a professor at the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging and the study’s lead author.
Positive responses were even higher on certain scores, such as:
- appreciation and acceptance of life
- less concern about failure
- self-reflection, tolerance of others, and courage to face problems in life
- strengthened relationships and new opportunities to meet people.
Read the full story here