Marion has a particular type of dementia that affects her ability to communicate. She would often miss out words and substitute with those she remembered, changing the sentence’s meaning entirely. This put Marion at risk of becoming isolated, and both people she knew and strangers would become confused and drift away, not understanding her hidden condition or how to respond.
How life with Aster Care has helped
Aster Care became a part of Marion’s life in the middle stages of her dementia when her communication was getting progressively worse. To create a plan of action, we first spoke with family and friends to find out Marion’s interests, both at home and in the local community.
Marion liked to play the piano and had a keen interest in musicals. So a keyboard was purchased, and Marion was encouraged to play and sing along, which she did with great pleasure.
An unusual feature of dementia is that some people can sing better than they can recall words because this may be in a part of the brain unaffected by the disease. As Marion’s ability to play the keyboard diminished with the progression of her dementia, staff now step in and play it for her, so she can still enjoy the experience.”
Local community support
Marion also liked visiting the local aquarium and cafe. To make this experience enjoyable, her key worker visited the aquarium and café beforehand and made connections with the local staff there. She explained the limitations of Marion’s communication to ensure that the local community could engage in a meaningful way with Marion, creating a positive experience for her in the outside world.
This meant that when Marion visited these places, the staff had communication techniques that would engage Marion and showed greater patience, knowing that Marion may not be able to explain herself simply. Unfortunately, since her dementia has progressed, she can no longer visit the aquarium and the café, but staff have created cappuccinos at home, and an iPad was purchased for her to watch David Attenborough programmes and sports that she always used to enjoy.
Marion is unable to communicate any loneliness or isolation she may feel. However, her experienced team knows all of the things she used to enjoy and continues to offer her experiences differently to prevent this from occurring.
If you’d like to learn more about our dementia care, we’d love to speak with you. Contact us today.
*Name has been changed to protect privacy