Dementia, a cognitive disease that affects the brain unfortunately can affect so many parts of someone’s life. While movement, daily routines and lifestyle are some of the major changes that take place, talking is one of the most important. Luckily, there are therapies that exist specifically for helping with communication.
Benefits Of Talking Therapy For Dementia
Talking therapy is a service that is provided by a trained professional such as a counsellor, a clinical or counseling psychologist, a psychotherapist, or a psychiatrist. The therapies can take place in person or online. One of the best parts about these kinds of therapies is that they are designed to be specific to each individual. There is no one size fits all.
There are many different benefits of talking therapy. Most of these therapies take place in the early to middle stages of dementia. Because late dementia can really start to affect the way the brain focuses, it is best to begin talking therapies early on. Below are some of the main benefits of talking therapy:
- Affords the opportunity to discuss feelings about recent diagnosis
- Creates a safe space to explore many different feelings
- Extended therapy (over several weeks) can reduce the onset of depression or anxiety
- Provides comfort for individuals
- Allows individuals to learn how to maintain healthy relationships with others
Types Of Talking Therapies For Dementia
There are different types of talking therapies that can help with dementia. The type you or a loved one may choose will depend on the desired results and at what stage of dementia the patient is.
Dementia & Counseling
Counseling is a broad way of categorizing therapies that include individual, group or couples sessions. Each of these aim to help someone face and deal with their problems. A counsellor won’t give the person answers, they will help to guide them with their problems.
Those who have been recently diagnosed with dementia, struggle to come to terms with how much their life is changing. Feelings of confusion, frustration, vulnerability and anxiety start to take over. Counseling can help a person to deal with and manage many of the new emotions they may be feeling.
Dementia & Psychotherapy
Psychotherapy is a term for another range of talking therapies. The type of psychotherapy that a person is offered will depend on what is most appropriate for them. A psychotherapist deals specifically with a person’s personality, belief system and experiences to help them understand what is they may be going through. Psychotherapy can help people with dementia feel less depressed and
Cognitive Behavioral therapy (CBT)
This is one specific type of psychotherapy. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is based on the fact that the way we think about something (our ‘cognition’) affects how we feel and then how we behave. CBT is most effective for people who are in the early stages of dementia. Their brain is less affected by the disease and therefore they are more apt to engage with the therapy. CBT sessions should be highly individualized to help meet the specific needs of the person with dementia.
Caring for a person with dementia can be burdensome and rewarding at the same time. This type of commitment can come with a lot of stress. It is best to seek out as many aids as possible to help you care for someone. Therapies are a great way to do this.
Orchard at Brookhaven is here to help our residents through their journey. Please contact us to learn more about our programs to help you or your loved one.