GEMS in Crisis – Staying Alive – Diamonds
By: Teepa Snow - a preview excerpt from the April Online Dementia Journal in a time of need
People living in Diamond state will be at slightly higher risk that their peers with the same health and risk factors, due to challenges with habit change and ability to consistently use new safety patterns and protocols.
When we also consider some of the specific heightened risk elements of lack of sleep, heightened anxiety, distress, inactivity, changing environmental and social expectations and experiences combined with loss of the familiar and the routine. The risk climbs even more. This is where our responses, new habits, and supportive communication skills can help to level the playing field and diminish the impact of dementia on these individuals.
We will want to brush up on how to connect. We will need to determine current awareness and wants or needs, before we introduce any agenda items! How we start or respond to questions makes a tremendous difference.
Knowing how to determine state of mind regarding discomfort, alertness, distress, focus, and beliefs will provide the foundation for a more effective interaction, even at a distance. The art of using reflection, validation, and empathy will be critical for success. The ability to identify and provide possible options when the preferred ones are not allowed for now, will make all the difference in the day and the person’s risk state. There is of course, no guarantee that these people will come through unscathed.
"Until there's a cure, there's care." - Teepa Snow
Accurate for dementia AND COVID-19