Home for Good? Preparing to Support People with Learning Difficulties in Residential Settings when they Develop Dementia

by Catherine Rae; Colm Cunningham; Diana Kerr; Heather Wilkinson

Jun 1, 2004
This report explores the findings of a study which investigated the current models of practice for supporting people with learning difficulties and dementia living in care home settings. It looked at the key issues and discovered examples of best practice in relating to providing care homes for this group. The report includes a poster with some quick tips for staff supporting people with learning difficulties and dementia.
  • As many as 80% of nursing home residents could be experiencing some form of pain (McClean, 2000a; 2000b). In the community, this figure is between 25% and 50%.
  • There is no reason to suppose that people with learning difficulties who have dementia do not also experience this high level of pain. The fact that pain can lead to people with dementia exhibiting 'challenging behaviour' such as violence, banging, swearing, spitting and 'wandering' is significant. Staff regularly cited a number of these behaviours, but the possibility that these might be connected with pain was rarely mentioned.
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