In the four years prior to coming to Honey Lane, Doris, then aged 91, hadn’t left her house. Her anxiety, a common symptom of dementia, had made her increasingly lonely and isolated. After a couple of nasty falls, her daughter Sally knew she couldn’t continue to live by herself. Something had to change. After extensive research, Sally decided Honey Lane was the right place for her mum: “It really felt like a home from home. Residents, despite their dementia, were treated as individuals and shown great care and kindness.”
Honey Lane’s specially trained team worked hard to build Doris’ trust and develop a rapport. Soon her anxiety was showing signs of improvement. Months later, Doris was well enough to join daily activities which were designed to create meaning and help her socialisation. Doris, who had been an active gardener and talented artist after having her children, gradually re-found her love for life.
After a year at Honey Lane, Doris is now happy, active and, most importantly, content. Her daughter, who lives in London, enjoys keeping in touch through Honey’s Lane Facebook page where Doris is regularly pictured having fun with the team and residents.
Doris’ daughter Sally says, “Moving mum into Honey Lane was absolutely the right and best decision. The team love her and she loves them. She is happier than she’s been in years.”
Karen Dean, Home Manager at Honey Lane is delighted with Doris’ progress, “I’m so pleased that Doris has thrived in our care. Moving to a care home is never easy, but in cases like this, it has given Doris a new lease of life and enabled her daughter to re-connect with her mum. In my experience, person-centred dementia care really can be truly life-changing.”
At Honey Lane Care Home our care team is dedicated and passionate about providing the very highest quality dementia care that enhances overall wellbeing and quality of life. Our approach to caring for people living with dementia is different from other care homes. It encourages people to live in the moment, creating days through a variety of activities that are purposeful and meaningful to that individual person which reduces stress and anxiety allowing people to live well with their dementia.
Dorothy age 70 lived at Honey Lane for over a year. Each morning she would dress herself in layers and layers of clothing and would wear a body warmer that she refused to take off. Dorothy would also pack up her personal belongings in anything she could find (even her own pillow case) and carry them around the home with her waiting for her daughter’s arrival at the home to collect her. Sadly she got very distressed and anxious if any of the staff encouraged her to reduce the number of clothes she wore. This resulted in Dorothy overheating and making herself so uncomfortable that she passed out.
The care team and manager spent time with Dorothy and her family finding out about her life before her dementia to understand what may still be meaningful to her that could help her live her days free from distress. It emerged that Dorothy had worked in a bank and spent much of her professional life counting money. The team set up a table in the lounge with a bag of coins and using this distraction technique around this theme the care team was able to keep Dorothy occupied enough to gently encourage her to remove the clothes. She would sit and drink tea whist counting the coins and this stopped her worrying about when her daughter was coming to collect her. Dorothy was content as this activity gave her a sense of purpose as it was something she could continue to do even with the challenges her dementia presented.
Margaret age 85 and has been living at Honey Lane for two years. In her professional life Margaret was a registered nurse and ward sister. The team soon realised that keeping Margaret free from the confusion and anxiety that her dementia would at times present was to get Margaret involved in helping in the home. She would want to understand if the manager had shifts covered and would help with other residents when they were poorly. The home found Margaret an old blood pressure machine and with gentle encouragement from the care team she finds a purpose in helping others in the home which results in Margaret living days that are meaningful to her, free from stress and anxiety.