Professional carers' experiences of caring for individuals with intellectual disability and dementia.

Peer-reviewed article
(2017 Mar) J Intellect Disabil, 21 68-86

Authors

Cleary J, Doody O

Abstract

The number of people with intellectual disability living into old age and developing dementia continues to increase. Dementia presents a wide range of challenges for staff due to progressive deterioration. This article presents the findings from a narrative literature review of professional caregivers' experiences of caring for individuals with intellectual disability and dementia. Seven electronic databases were searched using Boolean operators and truncation to identify relevant literature. Search results were combined and narrowed to articles relevant to staff working with individuals with intellectual disability and dementia, and 14 articles met the criteria for review. Themes outlined in the review include staff knowledge of dementia, staff training in dementia, caregiving, challenging behaviour, pain management, mealtime support and coping strategies. Overall carers must review and adjust their care delivery and support to people with intellectual disability and dementia, not only in terms of identifying and responding to their health needs but also through collaborative team working within and across services.