Seeing through the diagnosis of dementia
The stigma that comes with any diagnosis of dementia is one of the biggest challenges a person facing the diagnosis will have according to the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. A recent poll by Alzheimer’s Disease International found that “40 per cent of people with dementia reported they had been avoided or treated differently after diagnosis.” Earlier this year The Alzheimer Society of Canada launched an awareness campaign on this problem. Called “See me not my disease, let’s talk about dementia” the project works to encourage family members and the public to see the person beyond the disease.
For those caring for a family member with dementia and for those experiencing it, every day can be a struggle to connect, leading to a sense of frustration, isolation, grief and sadness. Then comes the next stage – avoidance – “I don’t want to talk about it.” This approach only exacerbates an already difficult situation, leading to further isolation for everyone concerned.
However, new discoveries about communication are connecting those suffering from dementia with loved ones and care-workers in new ways. Communicating through music is one way we are discovering that it is possible to see through the “disease label” to the original and true beauty of an individual, and also to see that who they are is still there… Read more…