At iflow Psychology, we provide comprehensive aged care services that support GPs, individuals and families in assessing and managing cognitive decline and suspected signs of dementia.
Our goal is to optimise mental health, daily functioning, and well-being for older Australians and their families.
Ageing and Mental Health
Ageing often comes with unique challenges, including cognitive decline, memory loss, and mood disturbances.
Our specialised services address these issues to enhance mental well-being in older adults.
Signs of Dementia
Understanding dementia's signs, including memory lapses and mood changes, is crucial for early intervention and improved quality of life.
Dementia often begins subtly, with lapses in memory and difficulty in recalling recent events. As it progresses, individuals may experience confusion, disorientation, and changes in their ability to communicate effectively.
Forgetfulness extends to essential tasks, such as managing finances or following familiar routes.
Personality and mood alterations can also occur, with some individuals becoming withdrawn or agitated. Difficulty with problem-solving, decision-making, and judgment becomes evident, impacting daily functioning.
It's essential to be vigilant and seek professional assessment when these signs manifest, as timely diagnosis and appropriate interventions can significantly enhance the well-being of those affected by dementia.
What is Dementia?
Dementia is a complex progressive neurological condition. Dementia typically results from damage to brain cells, which disrupts the normal functioning of the brain. It's not a single disease but encompasses various disorders. Early diagnosis and care are crucial.
Learn about dementia, its various forms, and the impact it can have on individuals' lives.
Distinguishing Delirium from Dementia
Differentiating between delirium and dementia is essential for accurate treatment.
Delirium is typically sudden in onset and characterised by acute confusion, disorientation, and fluctuations in mental status. It is often caused by underlying medical issues, such as infections, medication side effects, or metabolic imbalances. Suspected delirium should be considered a medical emergency and anyone with symptoms of delirium should attend their GP, local hospital or call an ambulance.
Dementia, on the other hand is gradual. Dementia is a progressive, long-term condition marked by gradual cognitive decline. Unlike delirium, dementias' onset is insidious and not directly related to acute medical events.
Accurate differentiation is essential, as delirium is often reversible with prompt treatment of its underlying cause, whereas dementia is generally irreversible and managed through long-term care strategies. Both conditions require a thorough assessment by health professionals to determine the appropriate course of action.
Challenges of Dementia and Cognitive Decline
Dementia poses profound challenges, from subtle memory lapses to significant memory loss, impairing daily tasks and causing emotional distress.
Early diagnosis and appropriate care are essential for managing the symptoms and improving the quality of life for those living with dementia. Our specialised dementia assessment and management services aim to identify this condition early and introduce strategies to enhance the quality of life for those affected.
Challenges of Dementia for Family Members
The challenges of dementia extend far beyond the individual affected, touching the lives of family members and caregivers profoundly. Witnessing a loved one's cognitive decline can be emotionally distressing, leading to feelings of helplessness and grief.
Family members often find themselves taking on caregiving roles, which can be physically and emotionally demanding.
Communication can become strained as dementia progresses, making it challenging to connect with the person they once knew.
Balancing caregiving responsibilities with personal and professional commitments can be overwhelming.
At iflow Psychology, we understand the critical role family members play in the dementia journey, and our services are designed to offer guidance, support, and respite, helping families navigate these complex challenges with greater understanding and resilience.
Our services offer guidance and support for families navigating these complexities.
The Impact of Mood on Cognitive Performance
Mood significantly influences cognitive performance.
Positive moods, such as happiness and contentment, have been shown to enhance cognitive functions like memory, problem-solving, and creativity.
On the other hand, negative moods, like stress or depression, can impair cognitive abilities, leading to difficulties in concentration, decision-making, and memory retrieval. Chronic stress, for example, can have a detrimental effect on the brain's structure and function over time.
Positive moods enhance cognitive functions, while negative moods can impair them. Strategies for well-being can maintain or improve cognitive abilities. We provide strategies to enhance cognitive well-being.
Benefits of Having an Assessment for Dementia
Undergoing an assessment for dementia offers numerous benefits for individuals and their families.
Firstly, it provides clarity and an accurate diagnosis, which is essential for understanding the nature and extent of cognitive impairment. Early detection through assessment allows for timely interventions and treatment planning, potentially slowing the progression of the condition.
Assessments also help in identifying reversible causes of cognitive decline, such as medication side effects or medical conditions, which can be addressed promptly.
Moreover, a dementia assessment provides a baseline for monitoring cognitive changes over time, enabling healthcare professionals to tailor care plans and interventions to individual needs.
Additionally, it offers valuable information and guidance for families, caregivers, and support networks, helping them better understand and prepare for the challenges ahead.
Ultimately, having a dementia assessment empowers individuals and their loved ones to make informed decisions, access appropriate support, and enhance the overall quality of life for those affected by this condition.
Discover the advantages of undergoing a dementia assessment with iflow Psychology.
What is Dementia Screening?
A dementia screening assessment identifies cognitive impairment and dementia signs through comprehensive evaluation by healthcare professionals, such as psychologists or geriatricians.
The assessment encompasses various components, including a detailed medical history review, cognitive tests, and standardised questionnaires to assess memory, language, problem-solving, and orientation.
Family members or caregivers may be asked to provide information about the individual's daily functioning and behavioral changes. The assessment process aims to establish a baseline of cognitive function, detect any cognitive decline, and help differentiate between various types of dementia.
Once completed, the results guide healthcare providers in developing a personalised care plan and recommending appropriate interventions to optimise the individual's mental health and well-being while addressing any specific challenges related to dementia.
Benefits of Psychoeducation for Dementia
Psychoeducation for dementia offers a range of invaluable benefits for both individuals diagnosed with dementia and their families. Psychoeducation offers essential knowledge, reducing fear and stigma, teaching coping strategies, and fostering control and self-esteem for individuals and families.
Ultimately, psychoeducation empowers individuals and families to make informed decisions about care and support, leading to a more positive and collaborative dementia journey.
Ask Your GP for a Referral
Getting started with our services is easy. Asking your GP for a referral for dementia assessment and management is a crucial step towards better cognitive health and overall well-being.
Your GP is your primary point of contact for healthcare, and they can play a pivotal role in connecting you with specialised services like those offered by iflow Psychology. By seeking a referral, you initiate the process of accessing expert assessment, diagnosis, and tailored interventions to address cognitive decline or dementia-related concerns.
Early detection and intervention are key to managing dementia effectively, making your GP's involvement essential. Don't hesitate to discuss your cognitive health concerns with your GP, as they can guide you through the assessment process and ensure you receive the support and care you need to optimise your mental health, daily functioning, and overall quality of life.
Seeking a GP referral is the first step towards accessing specialised dementia assessment and management.
Book a Dementia Assessment
Schedule an appointment with Gus Ferreira, our dedicated psychologist (provisional) for aged care assessments.
For inquiries or appointments, click the button below to contact us.
02 6061 1144
Aged Care Assessments
48 Norton Street
Leichhardt NSW 2040