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'Better Care for Seniors'
... caring for those with aging needs
by Sandy Lindsay

April 1, 2017
www.saugeentimes.com

Health

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Max Clarke entertained on piano that got residents singing along and some even up dancing



Andrea Prentice, Resident & Family Services & volunteer Coordinator takes Councilor Dave Myette and former Councilor Marcel Legault (R) on a tour

The numbers are staggering.  There are currently 564,000 Canadians living with dementia and within 15 years, that number is expected to climb to more than 900,000.

Unfortunately, with today's rapidly growing sector of seniors, long-term care infrastructure is not keeping up with demand and the projected demand is only going to make matters worse.

Dementia affects each person differently and, one of the keys for long-term care, is to recognize each person as an individual and take steps to make their environment as comfortable and calming as possible.

Mayor Mike Smith (L) brought his grandson Dax to the Centre and he wasn't shy about meeting the residents!

"Everyone needs to feel that their lives have purpose," says Andrea Prentice of Southampton's Jarlett Care Centre. "Here at the Care Centre we have implemented the 'Dementiability' Concept through the 'Better Care for Seniors' program.  Residents are asked, not told, if they want to help with a task.  It can be something as simple as folding laundry or matching up socks.  It gives them something physical to do, something with an end goal in mind. "

(L) Steve Wolfe, whose wife Eileen is the Centre's Chaplain,  helped 'Frank' with some sanding

According to Prentice, it is a matter of knowing about a person's life before dementia and that's where family can help.  "We had a gentleman who was a farmer so he was always checking fencing and we couldn't figure out why he would constantly walk around until we learned that fact and then we knew, it was a natural thing for him to do."

" It's a matter of finding what interests them"" adds Prentice.  "That's where our Resident-Led Events and Clubs (REC) programs come into play. Residents form groups with like interests and a shared purpose.  For instance, painting or quilt making or doing crafts, can add purpose to their lives and that's what these programs are all about."

Matching socks by colour and pattern and colouring are productive activities

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Prentice also explains that it has also made a difference for staff.  "Residents are much calmer and staff now find little 'chores' for them to do and they ask them if they would "like to help".  While they may seem trivial tasks to others, to the residents doing them it makes a huge difference in their lives and it really does make a difference."

Staff throughout the Jarlett system of care centres  undertake specialized training in dementiability and one of the methods is a time-old concept that was initiated for children and is still being used today  ... Montessori


Beautiful quilts and throws made by residents ...

... are a fundraiser and are available to the public



Activity Aide Lisa Carr got one of the residents up on the 'dance floor'
 


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Saturday, April 01, 2017