End-of-life care aims to enable the person with dementia to die in the way they would have wanted, prioritizing the things that matter most to them. It also supports family and careers during the final stages and after the person has died. End-of-life care can last for just a few days or weeks, but it may continue for months or even years for many people.
How Should End-of-Life Care to Support a Person with Dementia?
End-of-life care should support the person to live as well as possible until they die, especially: their physical needs, including pain relief and management of other symptoms their emotional needs, including managing distress their relationships with others, including who they would and wouldn’t like to be with them their environmental needs, such as their surroundings and community their cultural, spiritual, or religious beliefs and practices.
Everyone supporting the dementia patient should use their knowledge of the person and any advance care planning the person has put in place.
What Does “Dying Well” Mean to Dementia Patients?
Dementia patients will want to:
- Be treated with compassion and respect
- Be kept clean, comfortable, and free from distressing symptoms
- Be in a familiar place surrounded by those close to them
- Have meaningful conversations while brushing their hair or holding their hand.
Great connections like this can help you close the dementia person and give them the emotional support they need.
Who Is Part of the Team Involved in End-of-Life care for A Person with Dementia?
Caring for people with dementia at home is demanding and stressful for the family caregiver. End-of-life care for a person with dementia can involve several different professionals working together as a team. This can include:
- Community nurses
- Social workers
- Care home or hospital staff.
- Specialist palliative care professionals may also provide input for people with complex needs
Common Signs You’ll Note in a Dementia Patient
Experts suggest that signs of the final stage of Alzheimer’s disease include some of the following:
- Needing help with most, if not all, daily activities, such as eating and self-care
- Being unable to speak or make oneself understood
- Eating problems such as difficulty swallowing
- Being unable to move around on one’s own
As A Professional, How Do You Manage End-Of-Life Care of Dementia Patients?
It’s necessary for a health professional to carry out a risk assessment and know things that could worsen the person’s quality of life during this time. Keep the patient’s family updated as their condition changes and involve them in any decisions. If you cannot meet with them in person, this should still happen over the phone.
A Compassionate and Caring Team
Taking care of a person with advanced dementia at home often feels relief when death happens—it is essential to realize such feelings are normal. End-of-life care gives family caregivers needed support near the end of life and helps with their grief, both before and after their family member dies. Do you have a dementia patient in Dallas, Richardson, Carrolton, Garland, and surrounding TX communities? Ameriprime offers remarkable hospice care that guarantees comfort and peace for the patient, as well as the caregiver. Don’t hesitate to contact us at (972) 787-0949) or on the contact form on our website to learn more.