When it is dark enough, you can see the stars. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Several medical newsletters in the past month have focused on dementia, due in part to a push by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to reduce the use of antipsychotic medications in nursing homes.  Many of the recent studies involve interventions for behaviors. More and more evidence is emerging that shows not only are interventions helpful, but that they can be targeted to different symptoms.  Research has shown that non-pharmacological interventions produce results and don’t have physical side effects. These interventions can be simple and practical.  Some interventions are social interactions and pleasant activities. These interventions have been shown to improve agitation. Other activities have been shown to improve depression and mood.

Research on behaviors has shown that residents of nursing homes have too much stimulation from bells, noise and overhead paging.  Many culture change homes are breaking up their halls into neighborhoods and using mobile pagers.  Person-centered care/person-directed care is a common theme in culture change homes.  Many of the nursing homes in Arkansas are trying different behavior interventions for their residents with dementia.  We have highlighted in our blog several homes in Arkansas that are using new and innovative programs to provide quality individualized care.

Join us on our journey to provide quality care to Arkansas residents of nursing homes.  Come learn with us as we try to assist people affected by memory loss.   Join us Dec. 5 for a culture change workshop called Alzheimer’s —From Diagnosis to Living With.  We can all learn to be change stars!

There is no substitute for the love of an Alzheimer’s caregiver.

— Bob DeMarco, founder of the Alzheimer’s Reading Room, and an Alzheimer’s caregiver.

http://events.afmc.org/home/tabid/424/ctl/viewdetail/mid/1078/itemid/152/d/20121205/AIPP-Culture-Change-Workshop-Alzheimers–From-Diagnosis-to-Living-Wit.aspx

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