Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Holiday Tips for People Living with Dementia

Tips for Joyful Holidays
The holidays can be very stressful for people living with dementia and their care partners. Large family gatherings, travel and gift giving can easily turn into confusing and upsetting situations. Here are some tips to help you have a joyful holiday season together! 

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Understanding Swallowing Problems and Dementia

NEW Hawaii-made video on dysphagia!

Thank you to the Pacific Islands Geriatric Education Center, Dept of Geriatric Medicine, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii for producing this learning tool Hawaii caregivers who are taking care of elders with dysphagia (swallowing problems). 

It can be used by both family caregivers, as well as professional caregivers, and has a special emphasis to our Hawaiian and Pacific Island communities. Please share the valuable and free educational tool,

* Translated (Samoan, Ilocano, Chuukese) versions of this video and written resources will be available by the end of 2017.
* For a copy of a DVD, please contact JABSOM at 808-523-8461

Friday, December 16, 2016

Tunnel Vision

There are dramatic vision changes as dementia progresses. People living with dementia lose peripheral vision and their visual field becomes narrower and narrower. By mid-disease they have tunnel vision. You can simulate this by making "binoculars" with our hands like we did when we were children. This field of vision is about 12" round. This means that a person living with dementia cannon see something unless it is directly in front of them and just about at eye level. 

We explore what this means in my Positive Approach to Care monthly workshops. Through role playing we can put ourselves in the person living with dementia's shoes and see what they can and cannot see. Only then can we understand what kind of changes we need to make in our approach so they can see us and we can make a connection.

These photos are from a recent Using a Positive Physical Approach class. During the vision change exercise there were many AH-HA moments. One woman whose husband is much much taller than she is realized why he cannot see her when she is standing right by him. Another person in the class whose mother is generally seated realized that the reason her mother always commented on her shoes first thing was because that was all she could see of her when she approached. Here are some photos from that day were we role played different approaches and changing vision.

Here is a video of Teepa Snow talking about vision changes that come with dementia and what it means,

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Increasing Dementia Awareness at One Kalakaua Senior Living

In September the staff of One Kalakaua Senior Living joined me for the first of a 6-part series of dementia workshops. Together we explored the difference between normal and not normal aging. Over the course of the next year we will work together to learn to develop new skills related to approach, cueing, and ability to connect with people affected by dementia.

Friday, September 16, 2016

NEW! Online Support Series
For Family Care Partners
Teepa Snow's Positive Approach® to Care is now offering a new Online Support Series that connects caregivers of a person living with dementia to other caregivers around the world. The series provides educational as well as support components for families and friends living with dementia. 

The group will gather in a virtual meeting room that enables participants to connect from the comforts of home. All sessions are led by a team of Positive Approach® Certified Consultants and Trainers. 

Click here to learn more about the online support series.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Powerful Words, "I'm Sorry..."

When you realize the words you’ve spoken are hurtful or upsetting, how do you respond? Stop, back off, think it through, then re-approach and start with “I’m sorry”. The most powerful way to engage is to recognize when you’ve made a mistake and acknowledge it.
  • I’m sorry. I was trying to help.
  • I’m sorry I made you angry.
  • I’m sorry. You’re right. I had no right to treat you like a child.
  • I’m sorry that happened. That shouldn’t have happened. Let me see what I can do.
  • I’m sorry. This is hard. I hate it for you.
-- January 2016, The Voice of Dementia e-newsletter, Teepa Snow