Communication strategies for patients with dementia

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Excerpt

MY MOM HAS DEMENTIA, and she doesn't remember me. When I was a young girl, she held my hand as I walked to my first day of kindergarten. She celebrated my triumphs and cried with me. She smiled at me when I said my wedding vows and taught me how to be a mom, but today I'm another random piece in a puzzle that she can't put together. Every day her world is brand-new and her ability to put it together continually diminishes. She's terrified of the very world she taught me to embrace. How do I keep her safe and happy? How do I talk to my mom?
I'm also a nurse, so I think I should know the answer. But there's no class I can take or special phrase to learn that will help my mom, or patients like her, understand that I'm here to help them.
The journey of caring for a family member with dementia has given me a unique perspective on communicating with patients with dementia. This article reflects on this perspective and proposes communication techniques that may alleviate nurses' anxieties when they care for these patients.

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