The Dementia Friendly Home will address the following areas (strategies can vary as disease progresses – and, not all are guaranteed to work for a given individual):

  • Home Safety, some examples:
    • Issues surrounding wandering or eloping
    • Stairs, throw rugs, electrical cords
  • The Sensory Environment, some examples:
    • Visual ~ lighting, mirrors, photos, paint colors, way-finding, cueing
    • Auditory ~ household sounds, nature sounds, relaxing sounds, appropriate music
    • Sense of Smell ~ aromatherapy, natural scents
    • Sense of Touch ~ hand massage, textures, holding hands
    • Sense of Taste ~ trial and error, hot vs. cold, soft vs. hard. Creativity with food
  • Exercise/Movement/Relaxation, some examples:
    • Being in nature
    • Chair yoga
    • Stretching
    • Meditation
  • Creative Stimulation, some examples:
    • Art, clay
    • Pet therapy
    • Plant therapy
    • Memory games
  • Assistive Devices, some examples:
    • Specialized telephones
    • Clothing that’s easier to put on/take off
  • “Dementia Communication Coaching” can be added as an additional service.

Wellness Care

At Sage Solutions, we work with individuals both with and without memory impairment, employing many of the same modalities, just applied differently. For example, aromatherapy is wonderful for virtually everyone, but its use and application will vary depending upon the level of impairment, needs, and receptivity of the client.

Each client is treated with the utmost care, tenderness, and patience. Depending upon the level of memory impairment, often family members and/or staff are involved in our initial assessment. Although we try to gain as much information as possible from the older adult themselves; much can be gained by observation and just spending quality time with an individual paying attention to the non-verbal cues.

We have developed a tool called an Environmental and Sensory Assessment, the results of which form the basis for the individualized plan to optimize well being, reduce stress, and live a life more fully, no matter where that might be. Through the art of casual conversation, we learn from the older adult (or their closest contact) what brings them joy, both internally and in their external world. With great curiosity, we discern what might be missing in the client’s life, whether large or small. We carefully observe, ask questions, and observe some more, often over two or three meetings. Delving into the five senses, we ask about favorite sights, sounds (beyond music), scents, tastes, etc. It is well known that much of the agitation expressed by those with memory impairment is a result of an unmet need and/or an inability to express. Our goal is to work toward meeting those needs in a very holistic and creative manner with the ultimate outcome of a happier and calmer older adult – and likely their caregivers as well. We also take a person’s living arrangement into consideration. Whether the client is living in their own home in the community, or in facility, there are many options, often incredibly simple, for improving the space in which they dwell.

Each client is viewed as an individual and each plan is a representation of the uniqueness of that person. Based upon the information we gather, we create a roadmap for the journey upon which we are about to embark. Of great importance is the fact that our map allows us to navigate through the many forks in the road leading to potential solutions.  And each bend or fork in the road represents another opportunity for wellness – mirroring the fact that each day is a new day for the client.  We are steadfastly committed to meeting the client where they are and encouraging them to lead the way.