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Living With Semantic Dementia: A Case Study of One Family's Experience.
|Title||Living With Semantic Dementia: A Case Study of One Family's Experience.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2014|
|Authors||Kindell, J, Sage, KE, Wilkinson, R, Keady, J|
|Journal||Qual Health Res|
|Date Published||2014 Mar|
Semantic dementia is a variant of frontotemporal dementia and is a recently recognized diagnostic condition. There has been some research quantitatively examining care partner stress and burden in frontotemporal dementia. There are, however, few studies exploring the subjective experiences of family members caring for those with frontotemporal dementia. Increased knowledge of such experiences would allow service providers to tailor intervention, support, and information better. We used a case study design, with thematic narrative analysis applied to interview data, to describe the experiences of a wife and son caring for a husband/father with semantic dementia. Using this approach, we identified four themes: (a) living with routines, (b) policing and protecting, (c) making connections, and (d) being adaptive and flexible. Each of these themes were shared and extended, with the importance of routines in everyday life highlighted. The implications for policy, practice, and research are discussed.
|Practical Implications|| |
A speech and language therapist will want to explore with all the family members of someone with semantic dementia, the effect that this diagnosis is having on their lives. In particular, the therapist may want to look at how to enable/maintain conversations and interactions which are both useful and pleasant for each family member. To do this, the therapist will want to talk, observe and plan with the client and family members about how they might approach keeping engaged in routines, communicative interactions and interests. The therapist will also want to liaise with the multi-disciplinary team to ensure the client is safe and able to maintain safety and to provide timely support.
|Lay Summary|| |
This paper explores what it is like to live and communicate with someone who has semantic dementia. Semantic dementia is a relatively rare form of progressive brain disease which affects a person’s ability to understand the world around them. It shows itself gradually as a person finds that they are having more and more difficulty understanding what is said to them and more and more difficulty finding their own words to reply. The person who has this kind of dementia does not forget where they are or what has happened to them (unlike others who have Alzheimer’s dementia for example).
|Keywords||semantic dementia; lived experience; family;|
|Alternate Journal||Qual Health Res|