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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Music and rhythms connect people to the past, to each other and to their souls (part 2)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Alzheimer's Products

Sounds for the mind and the brain
Natural sounds are probably the best for mood and meditation. A gentle rain, or the wind blowing through pine trees, can work magic. To stimulate cognition, a Mozart symphony is probably better. And the music that the Alzheimer's patient enjoyed when he or she was younger is best to stimulate reminiscence. Therefore, a variety of sound stimulation is important.

Sound doesn't have to be pleasing or melodic to be effective. Rattles and other percussion musical instruments are also good, especially if the Alzheimer's patient is playing them. The physical activity and the stimulation of listening to and following a rhythm both add to the benefits of the passive auditory stimulation. Even "white noise" has been shown to improve memory in Alzheimer's patients.

Here is a dementia music activity

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Music and rhythms connect people to the past, to each other and to their souls

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity

Music is everywhere!
Alzheimer's Products



Auditory Stimulation – Our ears probably provides us with our second most vibrant source of sensory stimulation. Our eyes allow us to enjoy the paintings of Rembrandt and the sculpture of Michelangelo. Our ears allow us to share in the genius of Mozart and Beethoven; to wake up to a symphony of birds on a spring morning.

Auditory stimulation for people with Alzheimer's and dementia is as effective for mood enhancement, relaxation, and cognition as it is for everyone else. The calming effects of music are well known. Farmers play music to their cows and the cows produce more and better milk. Music makes plants grow larger and healthier. Music is good for living things including people.

And it's not just music that benefits dementia patients (and everyone else, as well). The sound of water, from a babbling brook or from an artificial waterfall, is to the ear what a camp fire is to the eye. Both are mesmerizing and calming, as is the sound of a well tuned bell or wind chime.

Friday, January 22, 2010

National Activity Professionals Week

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity

How did things go for you during National Activity Professionals Week?

Our residents really enjoyed the activities I planned
You can see them by clicking here

However the administrator and other managers were oblivious as to the significance of the week.

I guess sometimes Activities Directors and the Activities Department get ignored especially if you run a quality program that the Department of Public Health finds adequete or better

Anyway onto more activities for the end of January and February

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Happy Activity Professionals Week

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity

For the next week I am going to focus on activities.
First of all, it is National Activity Professionals Week.
Second activities improve the quality of life of those with Alzheimer’s disease, related dementias, those with physical disabilities, those with developmental disabilities, all those living in long term care and actually for anyone.

Here are

Top Ten Reasons For Residents to Attend Activities

click here to read what they are

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The utensils keeping frail people eating independently (part 4)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity



By Jane Elliott
Health reporter, BBC News



Mealtimes are such an important part of the day and eating well is crucial for people with dementia who may otherwise deteriorate more quickly."

Mr Timlin said food was such an important part of his family's life that he wanted others to enjoy it for as long as possible. He said this had been the driving force behind his designs.

"In my house the kitchen was the centre of the home and dinner was the place where we touched base as a family.

"My grandmother was a very strong woman who hated the idea of being dependent, refused to sit in a wheelchair and remained as someone I would seek counsel from until the very end of her days.

"She has shaped my view of older people in a way that will never leave me."

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The utensils keeping frail people eating independently (part 3)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity



By Jane Elliott
Health reporter, BBC News

the food cools and becomes unappetising.


Gregor Timlin says he believes food should be a pleasure
"Gregor has taken into consideration these challenges and come up with designs that do not look out of place in a normal dining room.

"They look stylish while being practical. He has thought about simple but important issues, such as how the plate looks, right through to the issue of how long it may take someone to eat and how the food can be kept warm for longer.

"He has also ensured that the design of each utensil allows the resident to retain their independence for as long as possible. This ultimately allows the dignity of the resident to be maintained."

Rebecca Wood, chief executive of the Alzheimer's Research Trust, said there was certainly a gap in the market and that Mr Timlin's work could even keep people independent longer.

"This initiative could be of great benefit to people with dementia living in care homes, helping them to maintain eating skills for longer and enjoy their food more," she said.
More tomorrow

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The utensils keeping frail people eating independently (part 2)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity



By Jane Elliott
Health reporter, BBC News

"Care homes are the place design forgot," he said.

"There is a double standard, older people in care have no choice but to use designs most carers would be embarrassed to use."

So, working closely with Bupa and the Helen Hamlyn Centre, Mr Timlin visited numerous care homes, spending time with staff and residents to see how he could improve their eating experiences.

He designed:


a cup and plate to help those with poor vision, by using colour to ensure the food contrasts with the plate, and make the plate edge visible against the table
a high-lipped plate to help people with limited dexterity to keep food on their plate, and a removable microwavable outer layer to keep their food warm for longer
a cup with an insulating layer of neoprene to replace childlike double-handled cups by removing the handles and allowing the resident to grab it like a glass
a plate shaped so care workers can hold it close to residents unable to feed themselves, meaning they can still see and smell what they are eating
a table designed to accommodate wheelchairs so all residents can get close enough to their food to eat, with lights that can be adjusted to compensate for different visual difficulties
Michalae Thompson, home manager at Bupa's Meadbank Nursing Centre in London, which Mr Timlin visited, said she had been very impressed by the designs, which she feels are much needed.

"The problems associated with dementia in relation to eating and drinking result in food being 'chased' around normal plates and the options that are available are quite childlike, such as plate guards and split plates," she said.

"The drinking cups can look like enlarged babies' cups. Also someone with dementia may taker longer to eat and this can cause issues as the food cools.......more tomorrow

Monday, January 11, 2010

The utensils keeping frail people eating independently

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity



By Jane Elliott
Health reporter, BBC News

Designer Gregor Timlin's maternal grandmother was the backbone of her family.

For her, cooking was a pleasure and a joy and she kept her independence as long as possible.

But sadly this is not the case for some of the UK's elderly and frail.

About 700,000 people in the UK have dementia, and more than a third of these live in care homes.

Crockery, tableware and even the tables themselves are in most cases not designed for the less able.

Visiting relatives over the years, Mr Timlin saw staff were often having to "infantilise" residents, feeding and mopping up after them.

So he came up with a range of plates, tablecloths, lighting and tables, which should be available from November, designed to make independent eating possible.......more tomorrow

Friday, January 8, 2010

January is hot tea month

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity

To all the readers of this blog who are eager to learn more about dementia, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very happy new year

Have a tea party and use these tea facts for a discussion

January is hot tea month. There is no question about the popularity of tea as it is the most consumed liquid in the world after water. There are many varieties as herbal, green, black, white, red, oolong…, but which ones offer the most benefit and nutrition?

Teas such as black, white, green and oolong come from a plant called Camellia sinensis. The leaves, used for tea, contain polyphenols which are a anti-cancer antioxidants. The way you can tell if a tea is processes is that it will become very dark. The white and green teas are the least processed. The white tea comes from the very young spring leaves that are steamed very quickly. Still all the teas mentioned at the first part of this paragraph contain polyphenols. Many people don’t realize that these teas rank as high (sometimes higher) than fresh fruits and vegetables in antioxidant potential.

Many teas that we refer to as herbal teas are not even teas, but plant infusions made from herbs, flowers, roots and spices. The “herbal teas” do not generally contain caffeine. However, the other teas do. Yet, it is less cup for cup of coffee. 40 mg of caffeine is contained in the average cup of tea as opposed to coffee which has 85 mg. If you must have sweetener in your tea, try raw honey which will give you many health benefits as opposed to white sugar or even processed honey.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Improving Communication Between Nursing Assistants and Nursing Home Residents During Care Routines

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Here is a dementia music activity

Louis D. Burgioa,b, Rebecca Allen-Burgea,b, David L. Rothc, Michelle S. Bourgeoisd, Katinka Dijkstrad, John Gerstlea, Erik Jacksona and Leanna Bankestera
a Applied Gerontology Program, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
b Department of Psychology, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
c Department of Psychology, University of Alabama at Birmingham
d Department of Communication Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee

Correspondence: Louis D. Burgio, The University of Alabama, Department of Psychology and The Applied Gerontology Program, Box 870315, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0315. E-mail: lburgio@sw.ua.edu.

Decision Editor: Laurence G. Branch, PhD

Purpose: We examined the effects of communication skills training and the use of memory books by certified nursing assistants (CNAs) on verbal interactions between CNAs (n = 64) and nursing home residents (n = 67) during care routines. Design and Methods: CNAs were taught to use communication skills and memory books during their interactions with residents with moderate cognitive impairments and intact communication abilities. A staff motivational system was used to encourage performance and maintenance of these skills. Formal measures of treatment implementation were included. Results:Results were compared with those for participants on no-treatment control units. Trained CNAs talked more, used positive statements more frequently, and tended to increase the number of specific instructions given to residents. Changes in staff behavior did not result in an increase in total time giving care to residents. Maintenance of CNA behavior change was found 2 months after research staff exited the facility. Although an increase was found in positive verbal interactions between CNAs and residents on intervention units, other changes in resident communication were absent. Implications: Nursing staff can be trained to improve and maintain communication skills during care without increasing the amount of time delivering care. The methodological advantages of including measures to assess treatment implementation are discussed