The direct cost of lzheimer cre in the UK ws estimted t 15 billion ( 22 billion)(Melding, 2005)
Helth cre socil workers in community nd institutionl settings serve in the role of strengthening nd supporting fmily members cring for people with dementi. Therefore, it is essentil tht prctitioners understnd the effects nd the dynmic nd chnging nture of cregiving so tht interventions my be tilored ppropritely to meet the needs of those t vrious junctures in the cregiving experience. For exmple, competent nursing home socil workers must be knowledgeble bout the psychosocil effects of plcement on cregivers so they cn develop pproprite nd supportive services for fmily members. To the sme extent nurses should be wre of dieting effects on dementi tht cuse progression of disese if not tken into creful considertion. In the following pper I m going to tke look into the importnce of nursing in promoting helthy diet for older people with dementi. Discussion will be bsed round the disese of dementi of the older popultion since these re the people tht re more reluctnt to this type of mentl disorder.
First, let me clrify few terms. 'Dementi' is term used mediclly to describe syndrome (set of symptoms) tht is cused by mny different diseses. These include lzheimer's disese, vsculr dementi nd dementi with Lewy bodies. n nlogy is the term 'cncer', which is used to describe ny mlignnt tumour but is not itself specific disese. The nswer to the frequently posed question 'Wht is the difference between lzheimer's disese nd dementi' is tht, in sense, there is no difference-lzheimer's disese is one of the mny different types of dementi. (Brodty, 2001)
The dementi syndrome is defined s n cquired decline in memory nd thinking (cognition) due to brin disese tht results in significnt impirment of personl, socil or occuptionl function. Other brin functions tht re ffected include orienttion, comprehension, clculting bility, lerning cpcity, lnguge, judgement, resoning nd informtion processing. While there re some notble exceptions, s I discuss lter, dementi is usully of grdul onset nd progressive. The World Helth Orgniztion (WHO) guidelines recommend tht these symptoms nd impirments be evident for t lest six months before confident dignosis cn be mde. While most dementis re currently irreversible, this does not men tht dementi is untretble. Its progression (course) cn often be influenced nd mny symptoms cn be meliorted. s I discuss in lter chpters, mjor dvnces hve occurred over the lst decde in this re. (Brodty, 2001)
Most dementing illnesses re progressive, nd erly symptoms nd problems differ mrkedly from those in lter stges. This my simply be mtter of degree-for exmple, mild memory impirment moving to profound memory impirment. Other symptoms nd problems usully develop lter in the course of the illness, urinry incontinence being one exmple. While it is customry to describe dementi in stges, there is overlp between stges nd it my not lwys be esy to stte precisely which stge person hs reched. The first stge is 'pre-dementi' stge, lso nmed by some reserchers 'mild cognitive impirment'. Currently we re unble to identify ccurtely nd relibly wht it constitutes. The next three stges, s