Teepa Snow is an occupational therapist for those living with dementia and other forms of brain change. Her approach to patient interaction and change is strictly to alleviate the stresses that do arise from long interactions between care givers and patients across many platforms. Altercations and misunderstandings between patient and caregiver can be reduced if not eliminated by simply empathizing with the individual. Here at Faith and Hope Hospice have a large staff of both full-time, part-time nurses, and other caregivers who are not that different from you and me. All people have the ability to lose control sometimes and even experience a sensation known as burn out.
From life experiences we all learn how to interact, hide, share, and help one another and Teepa’s approach is not that different than what we all already do. Proper self control in breathing and body language can go a long way into making confused or hurt patient who are dealing with major changes in life more comfortable. Tepa also mentions that certain hormone levels in our bodies change due to a health management of feelings and breathing. The steroid hormone she mentions specifically is known as the stress hormone cortisol. In high levels of stress, large amounts of cortisol are produces and secreted into our bodies which lead to negative healthy outcomes. Cortisol is known to increase blood sugar through gluconeogenesis, suppress our immune system, and decrease bone formation.
Try to work with patients and their families who are going through brain changes or other disease like Alzheimer’s. It is in your and the patients best interest if you simply breathe, put yourself in their shoes, and assess the situation appropriately before continuing to help them. Patient care revolves around dignity and compassion. Without these the healthcare industry and quality of life would be in shambles. Healthcare relies on patient satisfaction and quality of service.