Essay about Nursing Care Issues and the Frail Elderly: Dementia

Essay about Nursing Care Issues and the Frail Elderly: Dementia

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Walking into the room hearing the conversation could not be helped. Two elderly patients were conversing, one was talking about experiences in World War II and the other was listening intently. When questioned as to what they were discussing and why, the answer received was one that surprised and saddened. The patient telling the story explained “Sometimes my friend forgets all about the past, so I sit here and tell my stories and then it helps my friend remember.” The other patient replied “that is right, there are days I just can’t remember anything and my friend here….remembers everything and tells me all about it”. The second patient suffers from Alzheimer’s disease a form of dementia and apparently today is not a ‘good’ days. Dementia is defined as
“an irreversible, progressive impairment in cognitive function
affecting memory, orientation, judgment, reasoning, attention,
language and problem solving. It is caused by damage or injury
to the brain. An estimated 4.5 million older adults suffer some
form of dementia.” (Eliopoulos, 2010, p. 413)
Continuing to listen to their conversation, while assisting the one patient with getting ready to go to have a shower, the writer casually asked about the patient’s life, and was astonished when the patient said “well I don’t know my brain isn’t working right today” the writer asked the patient how many children the patient had and was proudly told about one son who is forty-one, and about a grandson, although the patient could not remember the grandson’s age. The writer was told that the patient was widowed but the patient could not remember for how long, nor could the patient remember how long the marriage had been. The patient remembers working for a company that so...

... middle of paper ...

... work published 1979)
John Hopkins Medicine. (nd). Nervous System Disorders - Alzheimer's Disease | Johns Hopkins Medicine Health Library . Johns Hopkins Medicine, based in Baltimore, Maryland. Retrieved July 18, 2011, from,P00772/
Preventing Dementia. (2008). Memory (medletter),7-24. Retrieved July 4, 2011 from EBSCOhost.
Registered Nurses Association of Ontario. (2004). Caregiving strategies for older aduts with delirium, dementia, and depression. Nursing Best Practice Guidelines Shaping the future of Nursing, Retrieved July 14, 2011 from

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