A relational approach to providing care for a person suffering from dementia

Citation
D. Greenwood et al., A relational approach to providing care for a person suffering from dementia, J ADV NURS, 36(4), 2001, pp. 583-590
Citations number
29
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Public Health & Health Care Science
Journal title
JOURNAL OF ADVANCED NURSING
ISSN journal
0309-2402 → ACNP
Volume
36
Issue
4
Year of publication
2001
Pages
583 - 590
Database
ISI
SICI code
0309-2402(200111)36:4<583:ARATPC>2.0.ZU;2-4
Abstract
Aims of the paper. This paper examines the care provision for people suffer ing from dementia and explores the potential benefits associated with an ap proach to care that emphasizes the importance of relationships. Background. Recent research findings have provided an incentive to re-evalu ate the established approaches to care for this client group. Two separate studies identified education and intellectual stimulation as important dete rminants of the onset of Alzheimer's disease (Ott et al. 1995, Snowdon et a l. 1996). These findings have encouraged the hypothesis that potential symp tomatic benefits may be achieved by providing a more stimulating environmen t for people with dementia. Methods. A case study is outlined which illustrates an approach to caring i nfluenced by the Continental philosopher, Emmanuel Levinas. Primacy is give n to the relationships that make up caring, and not to a method that sets o ut to achieve an identified objective. The issue of mutual responsibility w ithin the provision of care is highlighted in the case study. Findings. The hypothesis presented in this paper is that a person has more of an opportunity to develop to the limits of their potential by establishi ng the importance of relationships in providing care by means of education and training of the people involved. The beneficiaries might be the caregiv er or the person in receipt of care. Conclusions. An environment that attempts to educate people to recognize th e importance of relationships will be more effective in achieving the poten tial benefits of symptom alleviation identified by the research into Alzhei mer's disease outlined in this paper.