Caring for a loved one or resident with dementia can be an overwhelming task, especially as their disease progresses.
With over 55 million people diagnosed with dementia worldwide, memory care experts and knowledgeable caregivers are much needed.
That’s why Teepa Snow, dementia educator and specialist, created the Positive Approach to Care.
Learning PAC techniques and methods provide caregivers with better understanding and interactions and relationships with those they care for.
Read on to learn more about Teepa Snow’s Positive Approach to Care, how this method can make you a better caregiver, and how PAC is used in our KSL community.
Who is Teepa Snow?
She has made it her life mission to understand dementia and better the lives of caregivers and those living with dementia and other memory diseases.
With her knowledge of brain function and changes that occur as dementia progresses, she developed PAC, which involves using appropriate therapeutic approaches.
The Kensington team follows PAC, as it aligns with our personal mission and offers a person-centered approach that allows us to better care for our residents and supports them through each stage of their memory disease.
Our team understands that as dementia progresses, our resident’s abilities will change and decrease, and we will need to give them additional comfort and support.
Person-centered Alzheimer’s disease and dementia care training
While Alzheimer’s and dementia are both neurodegenerative diseases that will progress over time, people living with dementia will go through the stages differently.
This is why Teepa Snow’s positive approach is so valuable.
She recognizes these differences and teaches dementia caregivers the effective and structured techniques that allow us to help our residents live a higher quality of life.
It’s essential to respond in compassionate and thoughtful ways when caring for dementia residents.
Teepa’s tips for responding better to those with memory diseases include:
- Step back and think about what’s happening
- Respond rather than react
- Create a plan, but be prepared for it to change
- Figure out what you can and can’t control
- Take care of yourself
What is unique to the Teepa Snow Positive Approach to Care?
When developing A Positive Approach to Care, Teepa Snow considered the six parts of the brain that change in a person living with dementia.
- Occipital lobe
- Left temporal lobe
- Right temporal lobe
- Pre-frontal cortex
- Parietal lobe
- Limbic system
When changes occur in these parts, a person’s vision, language, movement, and executive control center are affected.
Teepa Snow considers how these chemical and structural changes in the brain lead to dementia symptoms, such as mental decline, confusion, irritability, personality changes, anxiety, wandering, and falling.
Understanding that the brain is failing, and a person has no control of their symptoms, can help caregivers be more patient and understanding.
Some of the topics covered during PAC training include:
- Dementia care skills and techniques
- How to deliver the highest quality of care
- How to build connections
- About the progression of dementia
- The types of dementia
- How to maintain cognitive health
- What to do after a diagnosis
- How to offer in-home care
- How to advocate for a loved one with dementia
- When and how to seek professional care
How does this strengthen the bond between care partners and residents?
Becoming certified in a Positive Approach to Care allows you to understand those who you’re providing care for.
Caring for someone with a memory disease can sometimes be frustrating because of their high care needs and mood swings, which can lead to caregiver burnout, resentment, and anger.
Recognizing that a person cannot control the physical, mental, and emotional changes they experience can help you be more compassionate and patient.
When caring for someone with dementia or Alzheimer’s, you must understand how these changes develop and help your loved one cope.
If you are frustrated, they’re likely frustrated too. Connecting and bonding with those you care for can teach you their triggers, which can help you prevent outbursts.
For instance, if you know a resident is sensitive to loud noises or bright lights, keeping them away from them can prevent negative reactions.
PAC training can help you increase your problem-solving skills and find additional support and resources to help you become the best caregiver you can be.
Join the Kensington Place Team and become a part of our family
Kensington Place Redwood City is a memory care community that supports seniors in all stages of memory disease.
With two specialized memory care neighborhoods, Haven and Connections, we use a person-centered approach to help our Alzheimer’s and dementia care residents with their individual needs.
We recognize that each resident is different, and to offer them the highest quality of life, we customize our care and offer personalized activities.
Our team has been trained to support residents with even the highest care needs and follow tips and techniques taught by Teepa Snow.
Our Promise is to love and care for your loved one and team members as we do our own family.