When working with the vintage population, especially individuals with dementia, you often will see signs of geriatric depression. Below is a guide to navigating geriatric depression and creating a positive environment that is supportive to individuals dealing with depressive symptoms.
Start by ruling out medical conditions...
According to the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM-V), we are required to rule out medical conditions before diagnosing a mental condition; medical conditions can cause/exacerbate mental conditions and vice versa.
From a clinician’s standpoint, refer your resident to a physician first for a full physical with a blood work-up and urinalysis.
Screening Residents for Signs & Symptoms
Some of these you may be able to screen and notice on your own but others you may need to refer the resident to a physician for a diagnosis.
Screen for Common Health Issues that Affect Mood
Taking care of a loved one who is already dealing with a neurological disorder is challenging. Spotting the signs of additional concerns like geriatric depression can be even more tricky.
You’re trying your best to navigate their new normal. That is why we created a list to help you catch onto signs that point to geriatric depression which can affect physical, mental and emotional health, and cognitive functioning. If you suspect risk, contact a healthcare professional for further diagnosis and support.
Risk Factors for Geriatric Depression
Considering Possible Chemical Imbalance in Brain
Signs and Symptoms
A day filled with love and appreciation for each other.
This can be a difficult time for folks who are losing their loved ones slowly to dementia, but with some preparation, you can make the day a good one. Here’s how to spend time with your loved one with dementia…
When a loved one becomes diagnosed with dementia it’s a shock on the individual and their family. Often times, the management of the changes becomes the responsibility of the caregiver. Families must adjust their lifestyle, routines, and even the way they communicate. This requires an understanding of the abilities of their diagnosed family member. The number of changes can be overwhelming, especially at first. Below, we outline 3 different areas to focus on for a more thoughtful approach.
Establishing productive communication with someone with dementia can be difficult at first. If you keep in mind these approaches you’ll have better luck.
During Verbal Communication
A few years ago I wrote an article about the ‘5 tips to helping loved ones with dementia enjoy the holidays’ for Chicago’s Daily Herald.
This year I figured I’d do a reboot!
Spending time together as a family, especially around the holidays, is priceless. Yet, this can be a challenging season for individuals with Alzheimer's disease, or memory care needs, and their loved ones, but a little preparation can make a big difference! Here are 5 easy, hands-on techniques you can use to enjoy this holiday season together.
Bring a family pet along! This provides a wonderful connection to someone who may not always be able to fully communicate. Furry friends also assist as conversation starters. If a real-life pet is not an option, check out our Companion Pets.
During visits, provide your loved one with an object they can hold to reduce confusion and fear. This can rewire the brain to form new connections and helps ground the person in...
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is the inhalation of essential oils to receive limbic support. When you inhale an oil, it travels through your nose, into the olfactory system, and works its way into the limbic system. The limbic system houses your memories and emotions. After you inhale an aroma, your limbic system produces an emotional response, a combination of your previous experiences and the oils specific benefits. For example, if you have fond memories of running around in lavender fields as a child, then inhaling lavender essential oil will elicit happiness and joy for you. In that same aspect, \lavender essential oil is high in linalool, a monoterpene, known for its calming effects. This experience would likely make you feel happy and calm when inhaling lavender.
How to use Aromatherapy
When deciding to use aromatherapy you have a few options of what you can do:
The mandate released earlier this year, by the Illinois Department of Public Health, is in full effect. We breakdown the new code that affects Home Health, Home Services, and Home Nursing agencies.
The official code is in the Illinois Register under:
Title 77: Public Health
Chapter 1: Department of Public Health
Subchapter u: Miscellaneous Programs and Services
Is your organization prepared?
The new mandate, Part 973 Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias Service Code, requires that agencies have...
A couple months ago we surveyed a group of healthcare professionals and caregivers who work with dementia individuals.
The survey was focused on caregiver self-care and guilt. We asked the following true or false questions.
The results were unfortunately not shocking since we know the burden caregivers carry, often putting their own needs last.
55% answered that they have struggled with self-care at some point in the past
45% answered that they have lost touch of their hobbies, or don't have a hobby
60% answered that they spend so much time taking care of others that they don't take time to care for themselves
40% answered that at times, they feel guilty when caring for themselves,...