Reducing distress and medication use in patients with dementia
This challenge encouraged new ways of thinking about potential interventions, including how medications are helping or hindering those diagnosed with dementia. One novel approach has focused on improving LTC residents' lives through behavioral interventions. The goal is to address residents' needs for relief from distressing symptoms through milieu opportunities instead of administering medications.
This article shares the author's quality and safety-driven project to decrease symptoms of distress in patients with dementia by using valid nonpharmacologic interventions and decreasing medication use.6 The setting is a locked memory unit in an assisted living facility; the 20 residents need consistent monitoring and support for activities of daily living because of memory-related losses. Through education and training of the clinical RNs, LPNs, medication technicians, activity coordinators, and residential aides, collaborative efforts are in progress to improve the quality of life of residents with dementia.