Dementia Care

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Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life.Memory loss is an example. Dementia is not a specific disease. It's an overall term that describes a wide range of symptoms associated with a decline in memory or other thinking skills severe enough to reduce a person's ability to perform everyday activities.Alzheimer's disease accounts for 60 to 80 percent of cases.Vascular dementia, which occurs after a stroke, is the second most common dementia type. But there are many other conditions that can cause symptoms of dementia, including some that are reversible, such as thyroid problems and vitamin deficiencies.

Dementia is often incorrectly referred to as "senility" or "senile dementia," which reflects the formerly widespread but incorrect belief that serious mental decline is a normal part of aging.

Information and Guides

The Neuropsychiatric Symptoms of Dementia,  this user-friendly guide was developed by the Alzheimer's Association Heart of America Chapter Director of Education and Public Policy and has been reviewed by dementia experts around the country. In a decision tree format, it provides evidence-based intervention suggestions for a wide range of neuropsychiatric challenges, such as wandering, depression, and resistance to daily care.

Hand in Hand: A Training Series for Nursing Homes, a training series for nursing homes that emphasizes person-centered care for persons with dementia, as well as the prevention of abuse from CMS. 

New Resource Tool for Alzheimer’s and Dementia Staff
For the fourth year, the National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners (NCCDP) is offering The National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners Alzheimer’s and Dementia Staff Education Week February 14th to the 21st Toolkit. The toolkit includes PowerPoint In-services Training on a number of topics for health care staff, and all include pre-test, post-test, hand outs, answers, in-service evaluation, and in-service certificates. The Toolkit is free and available on NCCDP's website.

Dementia Care Practice Recommendations for Assisted Living Residences and Nursing Homes,from the Alzheimer's Association

Encouraging Comfort Care: A Guide for Families of People with Dementia Living in Care Facilities, from the Alzheimers Association-Greater Illinois Chapter  
This free, online 21-page booklet, produced by the Alzheimer’s Association-Greater Illinois Chapter, provides information to families and staff of long-term care facilities about Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, particularly care issues related to the late and final stages.