Caregivers and Environments for People with Dementia
Damme, Mary Jane
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This paper is a report of a study to investigate the perceptions of caregivers regarding the effects of environments on the independence of a family member with dementia living in the home. The majority of persons with dementia are cared for by family members in the home. Caregiving can be stressful and rewarding to the caregiver. This study used a qualitative research design and a phenomenological approach to gather narrative information about caregiving and the home environment. Open-ended interview questions were used to gather information regarding the details of caregiver perceptions. The results of shared caregiving perceptions support previous research suggesting that resistance to change in the home is a barrier to home modifications to promote safety and enhance function. Caregivers need specific training by professionals in home modification in order to enhance functionality in the care recipient before environmental changes create confusion.