Keeping My Mom Safe, Happy, and Healthy
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Keeping My Mom Safe, Happy, and Healthy

When we found out that my mom was experiencing signs of dementia, we didn't take the news lightly. We were concerned about her well-being, and I knew that she couldn't keep living on her own. To keep her safe, I decided to enroll her in a nursing home that specialized in mental health care. She was concerned about the change at first, but as soon as she moved in, she only had positive things to say about her new digs. She loved the ability to get in touch with doctors the same day, and she was even able to make a few friends along the way. This blog is all about keeping your parents safe, happy and healthy.


Keeping My Mom Safe, Happy, and Healthy

How ABA Therapy Can Improve Behavior And Promote Independence

Lisa Sutton

Applied Behavior Analysis therapy is a useful tool when trying to help an individual cope with unwanted behaviors. In a nursing home setting, the variety of residents and the myriad of problems each one presents can be overwhelming to the caregivers on staff. No matter how many people are there to work, there are some behaviors that are dangerous and can cause harm to residents living in the facility. While things like a walker are sometimes used for residents who are prone to wandering, some facilities consider any type of belts, walkers, mittens or other devices as restraints and won't use them for residents. ABA therapy services can help reduce the number of unwanted behaviors in a way that keeps everyone safe.

Understanding Why the Behavior Is Present

ABA therapy takes a look at the individual resident and looks for reasons behind the behavior that is being addressed. When it is clear what triggers a behavior, it becomes possible to change the environment so that the trigger no longer exists. An ABA therapist will look for ways that positive behavior can be reinforced, instead of responding to the negative behavior with any consequences. This is especially useful in facilities with residents who have a traumatic brain injury or dementia.

Finding Rewards That Work

A system of rewards or incentives is what is going to drive the desired behavior. The reward may be as simple as praise, or ten minutes on a favorite electronic device. Tokens may be a reward, and the tokens could be used to purchase rewards. Behavior management works by taking the time to identify each unwanted behavior and taking a careful look at why the behavior is happening in the first place. Rewards will likely be different for each person, as people are motivated by different things.

When Independence is Desired

ABA therapy can help an individual better manage their own care needs. It may take some time, but an individual with a traumatic brain injury can learn skills such as dressing, feeding, and preparing for the day when a behavior modification plan is in place. Independence is a strong motivator for many people, and behavior modification can make this come true.

ABA therapy helps reduce unwanted behavior and makes it possible to learn skills over again. For those with a traumatic brain injury, independence can be promoted through behavior management therapy. Incentives are important, as they are the driving force behind behavior changes.