Tips To Choose Dementia and Alzheimer Care

Posted by Health Heal on July 6th, 2022

Dementia, and especially Alzheimer's disease, is an increasingly common problem. Patients with dementia often require long-term care; in most cases, this care is provided by a member of the family in generic terms, the so-called "main caregiver."

These people who adopt the role of the caregiver are under great pressure. They often present contradictory emotions and feelings, are disoriented and helpless and can get sick. A series of phases through which the caregiver passes have been described. In summary, these are phases of perplexity, impotence, duality-ambivalence, tiredness and loneliness, and finally, emptiness or liberation when the patient dies.

The result of all this is usually a high frequency of consultations with the primary care team, where they make demands for care due to various symptoms that affect and have repercussions in all spheres of the person, constituting the already known and described caregiver syndrome.

Within this syndrome, Dementia and alzheimer care can find physical alterations, psychosomatic alterations, family affective problems, and economic and legal problems. Therefore, it is important to carry out an assessment and follow-up of these caregivers to achieve more effective care for a patient with dementia. Factors to assess that influence caregiver stress:

• Background and context of family history.

• The situation of care, of the relative, including the state and behaviour of the same.

• The stress was inherent in the change in the caregiver's lifestyle.

• The caregiver's emotional response and their role as such.

• The caregiver's ability to successfully cope with their problems.

There are also questionnaires for the selective detection of problems that can be useful in assessing the burden of the main caregiver. Dementia, alzheimer, palliative care at home can use cost-care index, measurement of the caregiver's assessment, and the functional scale of dementia.

Caregiver Support Groups

For some years now, several primary care teams have been carrying out experiences with support groups for relatives of patients with dementia.

All of them have support and help for these family members in common, although there are different types of groups according to the specific objectives to be achieved. There are groups with fundamentally psychological/emotional support objectives in which the affected people direct the group dynamics, purely informative groups, and mixed information and help groups for dementia caregivers. The goals of the groups are:

• Offer family members a space for support and exchange of experiences.

• Inform relatives about the disease.

• Contain the anxiety and conflicts generated in these patients' care.

• Facilitate the use of bio-psychosocial resources

The criterion for inclusion in the group is that they are caregivers of a patient with dementia and wish to participate. The caregiver's exclusion criteria would be dementia or important cognitive disorders, psychiatric disorders, or problems that make integration or communication difficult (severe deafness).

The group support program consists of 8-10 weekly sessions; subsequently, if the group members are not linked to a family association or remain as a mutual-help group, it is important to hold a group reinforcement session every 2-3 months.

The group comprises about 10 relatives plus the leader of the group and, if possible, an observer who will be a team member. The contents of the theoretical presentations can be:

• Diagnosis of dementia, evolution

• The family is against the disease

• Basic nursing care for patients with dementia

• Safety regulations and accident prevention

• Legal aspects and resources

• Health problems associated with dementia

• Communication with the patient

• Caregiver stress prevention

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Health Heal

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Health Heal
Joined: June 27th, 2022
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