AUDIO: Familiarity is important in palliative care for people with dementia and as an individual’s dementia advances, change should be avoided and stimuli reduced, says an expert.
To maximise quality of life and quality of dying for people with dementia, making them comfortable and pain free and using a person-centred approach that promotes communication and shared decision making are key, said Associate Professor Jenny van der Steen, an epidemiologist from Leiden University Medical Center in The Netherlands.
“Comfort means that you would promote use of the senses with avoiding overloading people,” Professor van der Steen told the NEWSROOM at the HammondCare International Dementia Conference last Thursday.
“You want familiar environments for people. A change towards the end of life is not a very good thing. You want to keep things as much as possible the same,” she said.
Here, Associate Professor van der Steen tells AAA’s Natasha Egan what the research and practice says about a palliative environment for people with dementia:
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