Dementia Corner is a house full of life all weekdays!
It is an open counseling service for people with dementia and their relatives. It is also an activity house offering physical and cognitive training to people with dementia. You can step right in from the street without any appointment on beforehand. The Dementia Corner is open all weekdays and here you can have a talk with a dementia professionel staff who can give advice and guidance on all aspects of life with dementia. You can have a talk about any concerns or questions that may arise.
There is also the possibility of a conversation with a social worker who can provide guidance and advice of a financial and legal nature. eg. in connection with moving into a nursing home, applying for financial aid and support measures, guardianship and authority.
In addition, the ground floor houses the Alzheimer’s Association,who offers good experiences and exciting everyday life for persons with dementia and their relatives. Here you can meet dedicated people who burn for the cause on a voluntary basis.
The first floor of the Dementia Corner houses the training unit. There is the opportunity for physical and cognitive training, and there are activities in progress every day of the week.
The Dementia Corner also offers relief for families: In a family with dementia, one can feel very attached to the home, find it difficult to find time for oneself and get out. It is important that the next of kin maintain their energy so that they can continue to care for themselves and the person with dementia and remain able to see and seize the positive moments. It may be a matter of variation for both parties to have time separately. Relief includes activities based on what makes sense to the person with dementia and falls naturally.
You can also find a psychologist who offers counseling and clarifying and supportive conversations with relatives of persons with dementia.
For example, conversation with relatives of persons with dementia can be about:
- How can one take care of oneself as a relative?
- Dealing with difficult emotions and thoughts
- Counseling in relation to symptoms of anxiety, depression and stress
- Difficult situations in everyday life
- Communication in the family
- Letting go of what was once – dealing with a gradual loss
The conversations can be for individuals, couples or families as needed.
Basically, a talk is offered. It is then clarified whether the next of kin needs further assistance elsewhere – e.g. psychological assistance through the health insurance scheme. The psychologist also works with the teaching of relatives and staff, as well as the preparation of articles for a knowledge portal.
Aarhus Municipality offers free education to relatives of people with dementia:
In spring 2020, two programs will start:
- How can I understand the disease and how can I deal with it in my daily life? Education for spouses / partners and adult children for people with early-stage dementia. Thursdays from 16.00 to 19.00,
- Spouses / partners and adult children of people with moderate dementia. How can I understand the disease and deal with it in my daily life? How do I take care of myself and how do we receive help? Thursdays at 11.30 – 14.30,
Both programs are continuous courses of 5 times, 3 hours each time. The courses consist of classical teaching and joint discussions. You learn new things and meet other relatives.
Activities are organised for the persons with dementia while the relatives are attending the course.
Overall, the Dementia Corner is a power center in the work on dementia in the municipality of Aarhus.
WHY HAS IT BEEN SELECTED AS A BEST PRACTICE?
Politically here in Denmark, there has been an increased focus on persons with dementia and their relatives. In January 2017, the Ministry of Health and Public Affairs published “A safe and worthy life with dementia, National Dementia – Action Plan 2025”. The Ministry states that in all parts of the country, people with dementia and their relatives must meet a high level of professional quality, based on dignity, compassion and respect for the individual’s wishes, needs and resources, and for the human behind the disease and his/hers lived life. The National Dementia Action Plan 2017-2025 sets out three national targets for dementia efforts by 2025, supported by a wide range of concrete initiatives across five focus areas.
- Denmark must have 98 dementia friendly municipalities (which is the total amount of municipalities in Denmark.)
- More people with dementia must be examined and 80 per cent must have a specific diagnosis.
- Improved care and treatment efforts should reduce the consumption of antipsychotic medicine among people with dementia by 50 per cent by the year 2025.
Below are the five focus areas:
1. Early detection and better quality in examination and treatment
2. Better quality in care, nursing and rehabilitation
3. Support for people with dementia and their relatives
4. Dementia friendly homes and communities
5. Increased knowledge and skill level
In connection to focus area number 3, there are different initiatives in relation to relatives:
- Development of a toolbox with courses for patients and relatives
- More meaningful day and respite service and better support to younger people with dementia
- Counseling and activity centers for people with dementia and their relatives including younger people with dementia.
The Danish Dementia Research Center states that it is important to provide counseling, relief and targeted support to relatives of people with dementia. Relatives in many cases handle most of the care for people living at home with dementia. Relatives of people with dementia count not only spouses but also adult children, grandchildren, friends, neighbors and so on. Providing care for a person with dementia is more psychologically distressing than for a person with only physical impairment. As the disease progresses, the relatives are increasingly showing signs of worry, sadness, stress reactions and stress. Actual depression occurs 2-3 times more frequently than usual. Relatives of people with dementia often go to the doctor and take more prescription drugs than usual. There is also an increased risk of developing serious somatic disease, possibly resulting in death.
The DementiaCorner is a result of following up on the National dementia goals for relatives. – and it seems to be working very well.
- ”Nationale anbefalinger for sundhedspersoners møde med den pårørende til alvorligt syge” Sundhedsstyrelsen ,2012
- ”Opgavefordeling mellem borger, pårørende og fagpersoner i rehabilitering” Laura Elmdal Navne og Marie Brandhøj Wiuff, DSI oktober 2011
- ”Pårørende på tværs” Hanne Gullestrup og Maja Rosendal Avnbøg, Munksgaard 2016
- DAISY Projektet 2006, STØTTE OG RÅDGIVNING TIL DEMENTE OG PÅRØRENDE – en redegørelse for danske og internationale erfaringer
- ”Et trygt og værdigt liv med demens, National demens – handlingsplan 2025”Sundheds – og ældreministeriet, januar 2017