Today I visited a 65-year-old man living with dementia, diagnosed when he was 55 years old. He’s a new client so we don’t know him that well yet, so I was a little nervous about getting it right for him.
(I find it interesting that after 30 years in this dementia world, I’m still a bit nervous but I don’t think that is a bad thing – I think it shows that you care enough )
A kind friendly approach pretty much always works – treating the person simply as a ‘normal’ human being and facilitating day to day conversation adult to adult.
Through the assessment process we had established his preferences and knew he loved singing and music, even the artists he preferred to listen to, so I started with the conversation on everyone’s lips today “Have you heard the sad news about Tina Turner? ”– which he had.
We chatted about Tina’s life, and I contributed my new found knowledge of her life history.
Our client is restricted to one TV channel as he has lost the skills in using any equipment – he simply turns the TV on and off. Through the assessment process we had established his preferences and knew he loved singing and music.
I asked Alexa to play Tina Turner and we sang and danced along – the bit I haven’t mentioned is that our client has verbal communication difficulties – he absolutely loved it and sang as if in the car or the shower .
After our kitchen disco, walk, coffee out, trip to the supermarket I found a TV programme, “Tina Turner at the BBC” on one of the platforms which gave us some visual entertainment and more food for our conversation.
Thankyou Tina Turner for helping me to help our client have a great day.
Picture : Tina Turner 50th Anniversary Tour