I heard of the This is me tool in a recent online course about dementia that I am taking. The information below is taken from the Alzheimer’s Society’s webpage. You can access their page by clicking on the title, below, or on the links in this post.
This is me – tool for people with dementia receiving professional care
Our popular tool, This is me, is for people with dementia who are receiving professional care in any setting – at home, in hospital, in respite care or a care home. It was originally developed for people with dementia who were going into hospital.
This is me is a simple and practical tool that people with dementia can use to tell staff about their needs, preferences, likes, dislikes and interests.
It enables health and social care professionals to see the person as an individual and deliver person-centred care that is tailored specifically to the person’s needs. It can therefore help to reduce distress for the person with dementia and their carer. It can also help to prevent issues with communication, or more serious conditions such as malnutrition and dehydration.
This is me was first developed by the Northumberland Acute Care and Dementia Group and is supported by the Royal College of Nursing.
This form can be completed in print, or by typing into the PDF document and saving it for update at a later stage.
Order a free copy of this publication via our online publications form.
You can buy a pack of 25 for £3.20 + postage and packaging from our online shop.
I have downloaded the tool, which seems like a great guide to gathering important information about a person with dementia so that others can quickly get an introduction to who they are.
For someone with dementia, changes such as moving to an unfamiliar place or meeting new people who contribute to their care can be unsettling or distressing. This is me provides information about the person at the time the document is completed. It can help health and social care professionals build a better understanding of who the person really is.
This is me should be completed by the individual(s) who know the person best and, wherever possible, with the person with dementia. It should be updated as necessary. It is not a medical document.
On the back page you will find more detailed guidance notes to help you complete This is me, including examples of the kind of information to include. You might find it helpful to read through these notes before you begin to fill in the form.
There are places to write in answers to sections like “Things that may worry or upset me,” and “Current and past interests.” It also gives a guide to help answer the sections, with starters like:
My sleep: Include usual sleep patterns and bedtime routine. Do you like a light left on or do you find it difficult to find the toilet at night? Do you have a favoured position in bed, special mattress or pillow?
My personal care: List your usual practices, preferences and level of assistance required in the bath, shower or other. Do you prefer a male or female carer? Do you have preferences for brands of continence aids, soaps, cosmetics, toiletries, shaving, teeth cleaning or dentures? Do you have particular care or styling requirements for your hair?
What makes me feel better if I am anxious or upset: Include things that may help if you become unhappy or distressed, eg comforting words, music or TV. Do you like company and someone sitting and talking with you or do you prefer quiet time alone?
It’s apt that I would hear about this tool this week, when I have found myself thinking of things I should write down if I were to ever get dementia. Little things like how I really like shaved ice, I have never been a big fan of showering, picturing kittens playing in grass is my happy place, and I have always twirled my hair. I have already started filling this out for myself, as an exercise. I think I will find a few things out about myself along the way as well 🙂
If you or someone you live with has dementia, this would be a great information sheet to have on hand.