When caring for a person with Alzheimer’s, each day can feel like a roll of the dice – will today be a good day or a bad day? The challenging behaviors that often present in Alzheimer’s disease can be difficult to handle, but a new method may help Alzheimer’s caregivers better handle agitation and aggression and help reduce use of antipsychotics.
The DICE model – Describe, Investigate, Create, and Evaluate – was developed by a panel of senior mental health specialists as a way to help change challenging behaviors and avoid medication. The system details key patient, caregiver and environmental considerations and describes the “go-to” behavioral and environmental interventions that should be considered.
Although psychotropic drugs have been prescribed for years to Alzheimer’s patients expressing certain troublesome behaviors, there is little evidence they work well for Alzheimer’s behaviors and they also come with heavy side effects. Alternately, studies of certain non-medication approaches to affecting behaviors in Alzheimer’s patients have shown promising results.
Read more about DICE and how it is changing the way caregivers and healthcare providers work with Alzheimer’s patients in this article from Alzheimer’s Weekly.