Voices of Spouses living with partners with behavioural and psycological symtoms related to dementia
2016 (English)Conference paper, Poster (Other academic)
Background: Persons with dementia, whdo reside in their own homes, are often cared for by family members or friends. The presence of a family career is said to have a protective effect, postponing admissions to residential care. The majority of persons with dementia develop behavioural and personality changes during the disease trajectory. The quality of life for both the person with behavioural and psychological symptoms and their careers are affected, increasing both suffering and risk for hospitalisation. Family careers to persons with dementia have identified behavioural changes as more distressing than cognitive impairment leading to increased burden of care and admissions to residential care. Knowledge gaps exist regarding how family careers living with persons with dementia experience behavioural and psychological symptoms in a community setting.
AIM: To describe spouses’ experiences of living with partners who have behavioural and psychological symptoms related to dementia. Methods:Semi-structured interviews were carried out with 14 spouses of partners with dementia. The interviews included the completion of the NPI (Neuropsychiatric Inventory, Cummings, 1994). Interview data was analysed using content analysis. Results:(Preliminary) Spouses identified that partners with dementia had on average five to eight co-existing NPI symptoms. Frequency, severity and distress varied. The behavioural and psychological symptoms highlighted were within three of four possible symptom domains; Behaviour, Psychosis and Mood. From the narrative data four main categories emerged; Support, Coping, Vulnerability and domestic violence AND Social isolation. Conclusions: A large proportion of persons with dementia reside in the community. Support offered to persons with dementia and their families should have a person-centered approach meeting individual needs. A greater awareness is required regarding welfare and safety of persons with dementia and their partners in a community setting.
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IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:shh:diva-2492OAI: oai:DiVA.org:shh-2492DiVA: diva2:1052245
Alzheimer's Association International Conference, July 22-28, Toronto, Canada