A Different Kind of Memory Care for Georgia Seniors
Have you heard about the progressive therapy program being used at Insignia Senior Living? It is leading dementia care and education specialist Teepa Snow’s GEMS® Model, which focuses on seeing and treating the individual as unique and capable, rather than dwelling on the memory loss. Using gemstones to reference dementia stages helps respectfully define the characteristics of the individual and the care needed to ensure the best quality of life.
If you are considering assisted living memory care services for your loved one, you will want to ensure that the community offers a defined and structured program with advanced training for all staff, not just the nurses and care aides. Insignia Senior Living associates are not only trained in the GEMS methodology but also participate in the Insignia Certificate Program.
The GEMS® personality Teepa Snow has defined:
Sapphire – True Blue – Optimal cognition, healthy brain. These individuals are facing some of the common issues that come along with aging, like finding it difficult to find the right words to describe how they’re feeling, taking more time to learn new things, and needing occasional reminders about appointments or plans.
Diamond – Clear and Sharp. Routines and rituals rule. Cognition is still sharp, but distress can make these individuals seem threatened and rigid. They may get possessive about relationships or belongings, which can cause conflicts with loved ones. However, they’re still able to engage socially. They thrive on routine and like to keep life moving, even when it becomes difficult to maintain.
Emerald – Green and on the go with a purpose. Focusing solely on the moment at hand, these individuals might not be aware of their safety concerns or their changing abilities. They have a hard time following conversations and remembering details, but they do still recognize body language and tone of voice. They may start hiding belongings as they become more suspicious of others, and have trouble with time and place, reverting back to past instances in their lives. This is when a positive care approach and environmental modifications are important.
Amber – Caught in a moment of time – caution required. Reactions are based on the senses; individuals may no longer recognize cherished friends and family but can react based on how people smell, look, sound, and move. They no longer realize the danger, so safeguarding the environment is of utmost importance. Changes in the nervous system cause discomfort in the extremities and mouths, making eating, bathing, and dressing difficult.
Ruby – Deep and Strong in Color. Others stop seeing what is possible. Fine motor skills have become limited, although these individuals do have some use of their hands. A supportive environment where caregivers can anticipate every need, even when the individual isn’t aware of these needs, is vital. Guiding movements, providing structure to the day, and keeping them safe from harm is key to reducing risks to their overall health.
Pearl – Hidden Within a Shell. In this phase, individuals are nearing the end of life and may have difficulty breathing or swallowing. However, there are still moments when they are alert and responsive, recognizing familiar voices, touches, smells, and tastes. Creating moments of connection and letting these individuals know that it’s ok to let go is vital, as sometimes they may feel like they need permission to move on.
We are fortunate to have Teepa Snow’s GEMS® Model available to Georgia seniors with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of memory loss. For more information, call Jonathan Tafur at (678) 234-1074 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.