21: Environment Issues: The Human Environment

This program will help you:

  • Understand how the quality of life of those with dementia is affected by people around them
  • Improve human interactions
  • Design environments for comfort
  • There are no easy answer when its comes to the care of another
  • Our hope is to offer you useful information and guidelines for caring for someone with dementia
  • These guidelines will need to be adjusted to suit your own individual needs
  • Includes all the people involved in the person’s care
  • Promote love, respect, autonomy, self-esteem, health, and safety
  • Requires knowledge of the disease and the person
  • Provide a sense of control by offering choices
  • Promote autonomy by encouraging self-care
  • Provide assistance only when needed
  • Allow them to perform activities alone if safe and able
  • Show respect
  • Do not treat them as children
  • Avoid topics that trigger unwanted behavior
  • Be sensitive to signs of challenging behaviors
  • Use non-verbal forms of communication
  • Be flexible and patient
  • The human environment at home
  • Immediate family
  • Pets
  • Extended family
  • Involved friends
  • Family members should be involved in important decision-making
  • Families can be invited to participate in various activities with residents such as listening to music, watching movies, talking with residents during tea or snack time, making cookies, or birthday celebrations
  • In care facilities, families and friends need space for activities and visiting
  • Caregiving requires teamwork
  • Different strategies work for different people at different times
  • Requires natural observation and caring skills and ongoing training
  • Important members of the caregiving team in care facilities
  • Need to be screened, trained, and monitored
  • Deserve respect and appreciation

Why is Robert ignoring Sally?

  • A. He does not realize that Sally is speaking to him.
  • B. He is having difficulty understanding what Sally is saying.
  • C. He is depressed and does not want to do anything.
  • D. All of the above.

Choice A: He does not realize that Sally is speaking to him, is a good possibility.

  • Before speaking, gain the person’s full attention and maintain eye contact

Choice B: He is having difficulty understanding what Sally is saying, is also a good possibility.

  • The ability to understand words can fluctuate from moment to moment
  • Gain their attention
  • Use short, simple sentences, and repeat and rephrase things as needed
  • Use gestures and pantomime to help convey meaning
  • Give them time to understand and respond
  • Watch their body language and actions for signs of understanding

Choice C: He is depressed and does not want to do anything, may also be a possibility.

  • Many people with Alzheimer’s disease develop depression
  • If there is concern about depressive symptoms, you should consult a healthcare professional

Choice D: All is the above, is the best answer

  • Comfortable room temperature, lighting, and noise level
  • Create a home-like atmosphere
  • EDEN ALTERNATIVE
  • Care facilities should not be based on a medical model of care but rather on habitats that promote human growth
  • Incorporates plants, children, pets, fragrances, and music to create a comforting atmosphere

Click here for more help in placing animals in a care facility

  • Relaxing fragrances
  • Lavender oil
  • Melissa oil (lemon balm)
  • Music therapy
  • Human environment consists of everyone involved in caregiving
  • Promotes love, respect, autonomy, comfort, happiness, health, and safety
  • Good communication skills are critical
  • Plants, pets, fragrances, music, and children can help create a comforting environment

Written by:
Catherine M. Harris, PhD, RNCS.
Mindy J. Kim-Miller, MD, PhD

Edited by:
Sasha Asdourian

www.LightBridgeHealthcare.com

20: Environment Issues: Designing Safe Enviroment

Select the best answers from the list of choices following each question.

Click here to open Certificate of Completion
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