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Harvard Health Blog
What’s the best way to manage agitation related to dementia?
- By Stephanie Collier, MD, MPH, Contributor
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In my 16 years of work with this population, I am able to decrease agitation with exactly what your article is indicating with gentle comfort massage, along with calmative oils. It’s wonderful to see agitation being reduced! It isn’t a cure by any means but it helps to disrupt the stress that the patient is experiencing.
My husband of 85 was diagnosed with early dementia about a month ago. He has become more combative the last week. When he says something very upsetting to me is he able to feel sorry he said the hurtful to me or is that feeling no longer available to him?
Not just the US, the UK too. Also, even dedicated family caregivers don’t always have the time to do this. However, the facts are true and helpful. Could also have mentioned that if the agitation is due to pain – not always easy to tell with a personal with dementia – the best thing to do is give him or her Paracetamol. Recommended by a brilliant doctor I know and a psychiatrist, and many others.
Gee, I wonder which of those types of treatment insurers are most likely to pay for? I’m sure it’s medication. All of the types of care recommended cost more, involve more people. They’re also helpful for people with other forms of mental illness. Insurers rarely pay for those services.
So nice ideas, US needs a new health care system if they’re to be provided to all of those who need it. Otherwise, only the very well off wil.
The bottom line is!!
All of these are great,. But good luck with health Insurance to cover.
Unfortunately Medicare is no better than private insurers and often worse, considering there is no PR incentive. Dealing with Medicare now and it’s a nightmare. What most people don’t know is that Medicare actually pays most hospitals to treat less. If the hospital saves Medicare money the hospital gets a check.
Don’t know the answer, but part of it must be that our society needs to relearn respect and compassion and to value old people again.
Also, perhaps we could not use Medicare money for every cold or other minor ailment that we could pay for ourselves. Medicare for All would be a disaster because it would take more services away from seniors and give them to healthy people who are working and could spend their own money on premiums.
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