Help with personal cleanliness (including washing, bathing and showering)
We recognise washing is a very personal and private activity each person requiring a sensitive approach one which always recognises a person right to privacy, dignity, and respect. Ours caregivers spend time in really getting to know the person, building a rapport and become familiar with the persons preferred routine and preferences. Our caregivers are always discreet and sensitive to how the person may feel, they chat and take their time to talking with the person step by step, making sure the room is warm enough and if agreeable add nice-smelling bubble bath or introduce relaxing music as both can make washing feel like a luxury rather than a chore making the make the experience pleasant and relaxed.
Assist with dressing
Dressing is a very personal and private activity one our caregivers approach with sensitivity and always respectful of the person’s need for dignity in having the choice in what they wear. Clothes are an expression of a person identity and preferred style something we always strive to maintain and preserve. In knowing the person, we have learnt how they like to be supported how best to assist reinforcing their sense of well- being and respecting their right to privacy.
For some people with dementia too many options may become confusing our caregivers tactfully offering suggestions from one or two choices, laying the clothes on the bed out making it easier for the person to choose. If the person needs assistance to dress our caregivers will discreetly lay clothes out in the order of preference worn offering gentle reminders of what item goes on next, zips and buttons always unfastened, and clothes are the right way around. If part of the activity does not go to plan our carer will make light of it reassuring the person making for a positive experience one filled with conversation and laughter.
A person with dementia may go through a period where they are no longer changing their clothes something loved ones find incredibly challenging and distressing. There can be many reasons, and it is not unusual for our dedicated cares to be instrumental in gaining the trust of person and once again re-establishing a daily routine
Help with toileting needs (including incontinence care)
People with dementia can experience problems with using the toilet, which can be distressing for them and those who care for them. This might be due to difficulty finding the toilet or reaching it in time, or problems with coordination and movement. We understand how embarrassed or uncomfortable the person may feel, our caregivers always patient and reassuring, asking how they can help, offering just enough support to enable the person to manage it to ensure their dignity and privacy are maintained.
Supporting the person with dementia with their incontinence can:
- Reduce the risk of them getting Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) and constipation
- Reduce agitation and pacing
- Help the person to sleep better
- Prevent skin breakdown
- Help preserve the person’s privacy and dignity.
Help with eating or drinking (including monitoring diet and eating)
We recognise some people dementia experience difficulties with eating and drinking which can lead to serious health issues if left unchecked. Dementia can make it difficult for a person to recognise the sensation of hunger or thirst so may be less likely to ask for food or drink or may cause the person to forget they have eaten, which can lead to over eating.
In really getting to know the person, their preferences and eating habits we are able to offer the right support, observe and monitor for any changes , discreetly adapting our approach to ensure the person is getting the appropriate nutrition and fluid intake for their health and wellbeing. We always work alongside offering just enough support with meal preparation, whether starting from scratch with fresh goods or with heating up nutritious meals, offering light snacks if preferable making mealtimes an enjoyable occasion laced with humour and laughter.
Grooming assistance (including hair care and shaving)
Assisting with mobility (including rising and retiring)
Change in behaviour
Changes in behaviour, especially those that seem out of character for the person we care about can be extremely difficult for caregivers, relative and friends to manage. Although changes in behaviour can be a part of some advancing dementia, many people can experience or exhibit distressed behaviour at other times. We believe it is helpful to think of these behaviours as symptoms of an underlying problem , pain or illness or a way of communicating distress prompting us to try and find the meaning behind the behaviour and how best to help. More often than not behaviours such as anger and agitation are the result of the person feeling misunderstood or unheard. Our role is to find out the message hidden in the behaviour. We do this by watching and observing what the person is doing not just what they are saying, looking at the triggers to the behaviour and whether there is a pattern while supporting the person in a calm reassuring manner acknowledging their feelings , distracting or redirecting on to an activity we know they enjoy , providing the them space in a relaxed environment. Whatever the difficulty our dedicated caregivers through their positive relationship with the person are creative in adapting their approach to ensure the person feels validated and their voice is heard and if additional advice or assistant is required contact the relevant people.