Last time in our Caring for a Loved One with Dementia series, we talked about how using body language can help to improve communication. Here we talk about communicating with someone with dementia with Lewy bodies.
Communication problems of those with dementia with Lewy bodies includes:
- Fluctuation in articulation
- Reduced volume control
- Monotonous intonation
- Difficulty with initiation and turn-taking in conversations
- Describing and responding to visual hallucinations
- Repetition of favourite topics
- Problems with comprehension
- Emotional recognition may be more problematic for carers to interpret
What can carers do?
- Don’t dismiss visual hallucinations, talk them through it
- Don’t make a person distressed about their hallucinations, they may be comforting to them
- Establish what memories the hallucinations may relate to
- Maybe they are prompted by their setting. Try changing seats or move rooms to shift attention
Next time: communication challenges