Alzheimer’s Caregiving Assignment Paper

Alzheimer’s Caregiving Assignment Paper

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Q1. According to the Gerontological Society of America, gerontology is studying changes, including mental, physical, and social changes in older adults. Gerontology is a multidisciplinary subject and encompasses subjects such as Geriatrics, which focuses on the prevention and treatment of diseases of older adults such as Alzheimer’s/dementia disease. The general practitioners (GP) have a part to play in supporting people with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. Caring for the older members of the family poses greater health problems to the caregivers, who, in many cases, may develop health problems such as depression and burden. The caregivers may also experience burden by taking care of Alzheimer patients, especially when the caregiver has a poor coping strategy. The health workers are trained to focus on Alzheimer patients specifically, and insufficient training is offered towards the caregiver as possible patients (Schoenmakers et al., 2009). One of the roles of a general practitioner to the caregiver is to coach the caregivers on the processes of taking care of Alzheimer’s patients as well as offering psychosocial support to the caregiver. The GP is not only supposed to coach the caregiver and leave them all alone in the whole care process but should remain actively involved in the care process, and this will give a caregiver moral support. The general practitioners should also assess the general well-being of the caregivers because if the caregiver feels overloaded with roles in the care process, institutionalization, and abuse of the Alzheimer patients may emerge Alzheimer’s Caregiving Assignment Paper.

Q2. Care of dependent Alzheimer patients is on the rise due to the increasing aging population. Caring for elderly Alzheimer patients may result in negative impacts on the vigor and well-being of the caregiver, and this has been allied to stress. The stress and burden of taking care of Alzheimer’s patients may negatively affect the biological, social, cultural, psychological, and spiritual development of the caregivers. However, the caregivers can respond positively to the burden of care for the patients influenced by numerous aspects such as managing tactics of the caregivers, nature of stressors, and psychosocial theories (Rodríguez-Pérez et al., 2017). Also, people who have Alzheimer’s disease have various behavioral changes such as extreme anxiety, frequent agitation, and lack of initiative on the task that used to be their daily routine. Therefore, some coping strategies include understanding that all the behavioral change in Alzheimer’s patients is meaningful. The patients tend to shout at the caregivers or even strike out and this cause psychological stress to the caregiver, hence, understanding the behavioral change in Alzheimer patient will help the caregivers deal with caregiving-related stress. It is also wise to anticipate the misinterpretation from patients based on their age, and they always repeat the same question all the time. The government should also support and promote psychoeducational programs to help the caregivers deal with the psychological challenges that caregiving prevails. The caregivers should always use technology, such as the internet, to learn more about offering care to patients without feeling burdened.

For Alzheimer patients, home-dwelling for quite long and quitting daily routines can pose various biological, social, cultural, psychological, and spiritual problems. One of the ways to help patients cope with the condition is to ensure personal hygiene, which promotes both social and spiritual development. Christianity teaches that cleanliness is next to Godliness. Hence, the patient should maintain hygiene. To increase the quality of life, the patients should maintain social contact with relatives and engage in meaningful activities that keep them busy. Neuropsychiatric symptoms of Alzheimer’s include depression, irritability, apathy, and anxiety. The caregivers may also ask the patients their favorite music, since music soothes and lift people in their low moments. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is also important to help patients deal with physical, social, and psychological health (Cheng et al., 2019) Alzheimer’s Caregiving Assignment Paper.

Q3. The Geriatric Social Work Competency Scale II mainly focuses on skills vital for social workers, especially those working on behalf of elder adults, and these skills are recognized by the Gerontological Society of America. There are, therefore, various proficiencies that I would like to obtain as a commencement physician in the field of gerontology. The Geriatric Social Work Competency Scale II is grouped into four main domains, which presents different skills. One of the scales provides for assessment skills, which helps one to assess the effectiveness of the coping strategies, the policies which have been put in place to address the issues of the aging population. The assessment skill will help me beginning practitioners to assess and understand the available aging services and programs and their effectiveness in gerontology. Also, assessing individuals (patient/older adult) or family members to determine their conditions and challenges is an important skill I would like to gain from the assessment scale. Another important scale is valued and ethics. I would like to gain the ability to work with older adults and caregivers without violating their rights while building rapport with the group. Ethical consideration is very critical across all disciplines, and it is a skill that must be learned. Another scale is interdisciplinary collaboration, evaluation, and research; from this scale, I would like to gain the skill of working as teamwork (group intervention) to achieve the role of the social worker in gerontology. As far as research is concerned, I would like to gain skills in the theoretical perspective of gerontology research.

Q4. Having read literature and articles about gerontology and completed this assignment, I must say I would like to work with older adults for various reasons. Older age comes with many health problems such as mental illness due to psychological stress; hence, maintain close contact with the patients will help release the stress of having to be in the care facility for long. Most elderly people are isolated and lonely, and so working with them does not make me a caregiver but rewards me accordingly since even a ‘thank you’ note is a great reward. Older adults are sources of good and educative stories that one needs to be wiser and more intelligent. When visiting the older adults, they are likely to engage in the stories, especially the histories, and I believe I will learn a lot and get a lot of wisdom if I maintain social contact with them. Unlike other age groups, elderly patients are not usually afraid to share their experiences, and this makes room for lectures where I will learn new things about the elderly that perhaps will not be taught in class. Working with elder will give a chance to interact with different people and be able to impact their quality of life positively.

References

Cheng, S. T., Au, A., Losada, A., Thompson, L. W., & Gallagher-Thompson, D. (2019). Psychological interventions for dementia caregivers: What we have achieved, what we have learned. Current psychiatry reports21(7), 59.

Rodríguez-Pérez, M., Abreu-Sánchez, A., Rojas-Ocaña, M. J., & del-Pino-Casado, R. (2017). Coping strategies and quality of life in caregivers of dependent elderly relatives. Health and quality of life outcomes15(1), 71 Alzheimer’s Caregiving Assignment Paper.

Schoenmakers, B., Buntinx, F., & Delepeleire, J. (2009). What is the role of the general practitioner towards the family caregiver of a community-dwelling demented relative? A systematic literature reviews. Scandinavian journal of primary health care27(1), 31-40.