Evaluating and Modifying the Communication Environment for People With Dementia Research has shown that communication is affected by the environment and that modifications can improve communication skills in individuals with dementia. Poorly designed environmental features contribute to unsatisfactory responses or behaviors in individuals with cognitive impairment. Environmental modifications must be customized to the person, setting, and activity. Assessment provides a ... Article
Article  |   December 01, 2011
Evaluating and Modifying the Communication Environment for People With Dementia
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jennifer Brush
    I.D.E.A.S., Inc., Kirtland, OH
  • Jon Sanford
    I.D.E.A.S., Inc., Kirtland, OH
  • Hannah Fleder
    I.D.E.A.S., Inc., Kirtland, OH
  • Carrie Bruce
    I.D.E.A.S., Inc., Kirtland, OH
  • Margaret Calkins
    I.D.E.A.S., Inc., Kirtland, OH
  • Editor's Note/Disclosure of Proprietary Interest: Please be advised that the authors of this paper have a financial interest in the program they describe as developers of the ECAT for Dementia Care.
    Editor's Note/Disclosure of Proprietary Interest: Please be advised that the authors of this paper have a financial interest in the program they describe as developers of the ECAT for Dementia Care.×
Article Information
Special Populations / Older Adults & Aging / Articles
Article   |   December 01, 2011
Evaluating and Modifying the Communication Environment for People With Dementia
SIG 15 Perspectives on Gerontology, December 2011, Vol. 16, 32-40. doi:10.1044/gero16.2.32
SIG 15 Perspectives on Gerontology, December 2011, Vol. 16, 32-40. doi:10.1044/gero16.2.32

Research has shown that communication is affected by the environment and that modifications can improve communication skills in individuals with dementia. Poorly designed environmental features contribute to unsatisfactory responses or behaviors in individuals with cognitive impairment. Environmental modifications must be customized to the person, setting, and activity. Assessment provides a practical means of systematically acquiring that information, translating it into appropriate recommendations, and evaluating the success of those recommendations. This indicates the need for an environmental assessment that is individualized, not only to enhance clinical reasoning and judgment, but also to provide a basis for evidence-based, person-centered practice.

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