Namaste care is a Hindu word that, in English, means ‘To Honour the Spirit Within’. It is a gentle, therapeutic approach to caring for those living with advanced Dementia as they approach the end of their life. It focusses on providing comfort and pleasure through sensory stimulation and touch. Namaste care honours people who can no longer tell us who they are, who they were or care for themselves without assistance. It is not a medical treatment but a programme designed to improve the quality of life for people with advanced Dementia through meaningful activities, in a safe and comforting environment.
Who it Can Help
As Dementia advances, those living with it develop significant difficulties in the following areas:
- Memory and thinking.
- Communication – people start to struggle with making the right sounds for words and non-verbal communication predominates.
- Eating and weight loss.
- Behaviour changes.
It is often very difficult to know how to support someone at this stage of the disease and very easy to assume that there is nothing you can do to improve their quality of life. However, Dementia Doulas Ltd understands that even in the very advanced stages people are able to:
- Make eye contact.
- Respond to sensory stimuli.
- Feel and express emotions.
- Want human contact and connection.
In 2020 The Centre for Dementia Studies at the University of Worcester in 2020 followed residents in a care home who had daily 1 ½ hour sessions of Namaste care. Their findings concluded that there was a:
- Significant decrease in agitation after 12 weeks of therapy that was maintained outside the sessions.
- Increased alertness, fluid intake and weight gain during the 12 weeks.
- Significant increase in ‘Quality of Life’.
Dementia Doulas Ltd believe that a good quality of life is possible for people living with Dementia at any stage.
How Does it Work?
- Dementia Doulas Ltd will initially assess the client using the Pool Activity Level (PAL) scale.
- A detailed record will be made of the client’s sensory strengths and their sensory biography.
- The client will be provided with their own Sensory Box of items to engage them through touch, smell, sound and sight.
The Dementia Doula® will start each session by ensuring the surroundings are warm, calm and inviting with no interruptions expected. The client will be made comfortable with pillows and blankets. Sensory items will be used in a gentle way and hands, feet or face will be massaged. Appetising food and drink will be offered regularly throughout. Nature will be brought in and activities will become livelier through the session. At the end the client will be helped to relax and feel calm.
Contact Dementia Doulas Ltd
For Dementia home care in Cheltenham, Gloucester, Stroud, Tewkesbury, Bishop’s Cleeve and the surrounding areas, get in touch with us today.