August 2, 2012
Barth Holohan’s article on communication methods for those interacting with sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease was recently published in the St. Louis Medical News.
From the article:
Alzheimer’s disease gradually diminishes a person’s ability to verbally communicate. It is common knowledge that people with dementia have difficulty expressing needs, thoughts, and emotions, and similarly struggle to understand others. A simple trip to the doctor may trigger anxiety because of unfamiliar surroundings and confusing dialogue. Equipping yourself with knowledge of the appropriate communication methods will help make things like a visit to the doctor successful for the patient, the physician, and the caregiver.
To generate the most positive results, there are six key things to remember when interacting with an Alzheimer’s patient:
- Anticipate Triggers
- Read Emotions and Body Language
- Monitor Your Response
- Consider the Environment
- Check on the Caregiver
- Reflect on the Episode