20 Reasons Why We Need to Know the Early Life History of People Living With Dementia

“After everything I am doing, marching like escort, the child I was years ago, the boy in his first love that I was, the soldier that I was in those days, and the gray hair that I was one hour ago” – Yehuda Amichai


1. The human right of all people living with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia is to be with people who know their life story including cultural habits and religious faith (Bell & Troxel, 2003).  


2. Developing friendships, relationships, and trust with people with dementia is the foundation of person-directed care (Bell & Troxel, 2003; Zgola, 1999). Knowing, understanding, and thoughtfully using the life history of the person with dementia are the keys to creating and maintaining this foundation.


3. The only way to truly understand an individual in later life in a holistic manner is to see her or him in a life-course perspective.


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by Eilon Caspi, ChangingAging Guestblogger

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