Guests were invited to walk through a Virtual Dementia Tour hosted in The Inn this last month. The tour takes you through a series of simulated exercises coordinated to make a person aware of some of the effects of dementia. They were given glasses to wear that distort their view of the world and the lights were dimmed to change the colors around them. They also were given a type of glove to wear to show the difficulty in feeling an object or picking something up. There were a number of noises around them that were impossible to comprehend. This tour is designed for families, caregivers and case managers to be able to understand and empathize with those they are serving. This enables them to have a better understanding of the challenges facing people with the disease. Some of the comments at the end of the tour show how those who experienced it were definitely made aware of the challenges faced by those with Alzheimer’s.
The following are comments made by our visitors. All who experienced this tour walked away with a better understanding of dementia and how we can change to meet their needs.
“I enjoyed the experience and realized I must be in front of the patient when talking to them and speaking slowly”
“Tasks were difficult, total confusion. Enlightened, Had no idea this is how dementia patients feel”
“I understand now why patients do unusual things, this experience makes me see the importance of safety”
“Importance of well-lit rooms, reassuring touch and eye contact”
“It makes you realize how much more comfort and care these patients need”
“Importance of gentle touch and its calming effect”
“I realize how isolated the patient feels”
“I know now to enlarge numbers on the phone, change layout of the rooms, brighter lights, more overhead lighting, cover wall outlets”