Last night we had the airing of C4’s long awaited Dementiaville, an informative look at Poppy Lodge, a care home getting care of dementia elderly right. Both emotional and educational, the show led us on a journey with several lovely residents of Poppy Lodge, and each one was very recognisable to any of us who work in dementia care. The best part for me was in showing the difficulty family members have in accepting the dementia reality, and in many cases, struggling to get on board with the idea of entering the person’s past in order to find them and connect. Maybe this program can help families see the path through to love and connection.
As you know, we at All About Dementia, have been advocating all of the care ideas shown, for the past several years, and if I have a gripe about Dementiaville it is that the program stated the care at Poppy Lodge was new and revolutionary. The idea of entering a person’s reality has been a stalwart in dementia care from the 1980s, when Validation Therapy and the Eden Alternative, to name a couple of revolutionary ideas, became popular. Maybe in the UK we have been very slow to adopt to these but several care homes across the UK have been using the techniques shown in the program for the past four or five years. All in all, Dementiaville was a kind, informative, look at best practice person centred care, it will surprise some viewers and educate. I hope it starts the journey for many to see the future of dementia care in care homes.