Researchers from the University of Exeter have explored the use of an interventional-type care approach in UK care homes, finding it improves the lives of people with dementia. The trial combines the training of care home staff, increasing the quality of interactions between nurses and people living with dementia and guidance on the use of antipsychotic medication. The findings are published today in the scientific journal PLOS Medicine.
Dr Sara Imarisio, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“People with dementia can experience severe agitation that can be distressing for those living with the condition as well as carers and loved ones. There is a lack of safe and effective treatments for the behavioural symptoms of dementia and a desperate need for new ways to help those affected.
“Just like any one of us, people with dementia benefit from social engagement and this study highlights how approaches to dementia care that include a social element can have a positive effect on quality of life and help to limit symptoms like agitation. With 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK and that number set to rise, it is important that research into new drugs is coupled with other approaches that can help transform people’s lives.”