Our Dementia Specialist Care
Our unique model is a tribute to all the Residents we have had the privilege to care for – they have been our best teachers!
We have developed our dementia model by combining our 30 years experience with comprehensive professional training with world experts in the field of dementia, extensive research, and by selecting some of the best practices found worldwide. Our staff team is handpicked to deliver exceptional specialised dementia care to our residents and day guests.
We aim to make a difference in the well-being of our Residents by making each day count. Our thoughtful and gentle care interventions and therapies are woven into their day to reduce anxiety and agitation. We place each Resident's unique and individual needs at the centre of our interventions and provide good old-fashioned Tender Loving Care.
Our dementia model
We see the person living with dementia as being unable to process information as he or she once used to. The person is not able to store information, just feelings. These feelings can be triggered and cause anxiety, frustration, agitation and unpredictable behaviour. Even a simple question can be overwhelming, for example asking a person living with dementia whether they would like a sandwich. They may not remember what a sandwich is, or whether they eat sandwiches. This leaves him or her bewildered and upset because they feel they should know.
- assess fully all factors that impact the person
- identify individual care needs and non-medical approach
- apply interventions and therapies throughout the person’s day or night
- ease anxiety and encourage well-being
- regularly assess and review
resulting in a more secure, comfortable and content Resident living well with dementia.
Our Philosophy and approach
Is based on:
- the distinguished work and training by two mentors, the late Tom Kitwood (personhood theory) and Naomi Feil (validation theory)
- our own research and experience over the past 30 years at the Devonshire and Claremont House with Residents entrusted into our care
- searching the world to find global best practices for care management in dementia
We have developed a non-medical, bio-psychological, and functional environmental care approach. This simply means we see the person with dementia, our Resident, as being unable to process information as he or she once used to. The Resident is not able to store factual information, just feelings. These feelings can be triggered and cause anxiety, frustration, agitation and unpredictable behaviours despite the carer’s best intentions.
These unpredictable behaviours are often referred to as challenging behaviours. At the Devonshire, we refer to these anomalies as responsive behaviours, as they are in response to a trigger and only challenging for a carer, not for the person! We do not use medication to control behaviours.
Each person’s dementia is as unique as he or she is. We have developed thoughtful interventions and techniques to promote our Residents’ well-being while decreasing their anxiety and agitation. We provide ongoing training, coaching and mentoring for our staff in order to maintain the high quality of care and commitment we demand.
Our Dementia Specialist Care includes some of the following interventions
Each person’s dementia is as unique as he or she is. We have developed thoughtful interventions and techniques to promote our Residents’ well-being while decreasing their anxiety and agitation.
- regular assessments to address physical and emotional needs
- one-on-one interpersonal therapy and TLC to promote well-being
- personalised music and memory programme which can be effective, as music has an emotional connection and is one of the last memories to go.
- gentle reality orientation (if and when appropriate)
- redirection therapy
- validation therapy
- integrative therapies based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Energy therapy - see one of our advisors, Colleen Robinson's biography on our staff page
- purposeful activities to promote confidence and well-being
- memory care activities for fun and entertainment
- reminiscence therapy (“This Is Your Life” books) to promote confidence, well-being and a sense of self
- massage and aromatherapy as powerful mediums to heighten the senses of smell and touch, thus stimulating a feeling of well-being
- living in the Resident’s reality
- daily outings
- additional nutritional supplements such as coconut oil
- education and support for family members
And of course, our care includes a lot of Tender Loving Care as we truly want to make a difference!
We provide ongoing training, coaching and mentoring for our staff in order to maintain the high quality of care and commitment we demand.
Peter likes to help out and Rusty enjoys baking - these are an examples of purposeful activities.
Barbara is setting the table - this is an example of a purposeful activity.
Responsive behaviours common to dementia
Responsive behaviours common to dementia such as:
- Aggression (physical and verbal) - includes spitting, pinching, kicking, scratching, and biting
- Anxious behaviours
- Calling out continually
- Delusions/false beliefs
- Emotional fluctuations
- Hiding possessions
- Inappropriate sexual behaviours
- Not wanting to bathe, dress, eat, etc
- Paranoid behaviour
- Repetitive actions
- Repetitive verbalisation - this includes asking same question over and over again
- Wandering or pacing
- Wanting to ‘go home’ ‘go out’
Our residents stories...
A thank you letter from Ted’s niece Anne
“Trying to find a suitable care home for a loved one is not easy; it can take many months of painstaking searching and, until it was suggested to me that the time had come when we should be considering a residential care home for my Uncle...”
What Kim & Keith says about the devonshire dementia care home
Finding a suitable care home for your loved one is a difficult and agonising journey. We have 30 years of experience in dementia care and would like to help. Family members have volunteered to tell their stories and have given us their permission to share them in these videos. This is what family and friends say about Devonshire Dementia Care Home.
Residents’ family and advocates Meetings
Resident Advocate Meetings with Senior Management are held four times a year. The purpose of these meetings is to discuss any issues and concerns as well as brainstorm ideas. Occasionally we bring in speakers such as medical specialists to talk about dementia, advance care planning and end of life care, and solicitors to talk about Power of Attorney for finance and health care.