What Is a Certified Dementia Practitioner?
A Certified Dementia Practitioner, or CDP, is someone with a certification demonstrating achievement and specialized training in the areas of Alzheimer’s and dementia care. The CDP program recognizes the need for standards in the area of Alzheimer’s and dementia education, and it helps improve the services provided by health care professionals and frontline staff.
How Do You Become a Certified Dementia Practitioner?
To become a Certified Dementia Practitioner, a caregiver must attend an Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Care Seminar provided by the National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners. This course goes over the various layers associated with the care of seniors with memory-impairing illnesses. The certification represents the comprehensive knowledge in the area of dementia care for frontline staff and health care professionals.
How Dementia Care Has Evolved
For a long time, the trend in dementia care has been centered around the caregiver instead of the care receiver. Today, we’re seeing a unique shift in the caregiving culture, which involves engaging elders to prevent agitation and confusion before it begins. The key to this switch is that caregivers are now encouraged to ‘join’ the residents in their current reality, taking a person-centered approach to their care instead of trying to orient them to the reality of the caregiver.
The Problem With Reality Orientation: Why It Does Not Work Well with Dementia Patients
“Reality orientation” is a technique in which information about time, place, or person is offered to help someone understand their surroundings. When used to aid those with dementia, reality orientation can be more harmful than helpful. Directing a resident to real time orientation often brings out challenging behaviors such as anger, confusion, distrust, and suspicion. In addition to being ineffective, it can contribute to feelings of depression or isolation.
If a memory care resident believes they are in their 20s or 30s, the forwarding-thinking approach encourages caregivers to join that person in their reality rather than dissuade them from their beliefs. In doing so, the chances of agitation are reduced, and caregivers may even learn about the resident in the process!
Communities Where All Caregivers Are Certified Dementia Practitioners
Meeting you where you are, when you are. That is the promise of the Care Services team at Homestead Hills. At our communities, every frontline caregiver is a Certified Dementia Practitioner, which empowers them with the confidence and knowledge to provide quality care.
Homestead Hills has a unique approach to Memory Care. We understand that individualized care plans have an incredibly positive impact on long-term health. Through our Reflections Memory Care program, our care plans create meaning and purpose for Members and their families. Focusing on individualized care creates a full circle treatment within our communities.
How We Train Our Staff
Homestead Hills follows through with the promise to provide individualized care by supporting staff members as they go through training to become a Certified Dementia Practitioner. Setting up opportunities for our staff members to further their education and career through certifications is a benefit for both our communities and staff members. Being a Certified Dementia Practitioner means more than an added notation to a resume, it is the trusted care and confidence that staff members are able to provide a high standard of care for Members. To learn more about the NCCDP’s Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Care: Click Here.