Pigeonholing

March 28, 2018

In Jenni Mack

PIGEONHOLE
verb
gerund or present participle: pigeonholing

1.assign to a particular category, typically an overly restrictive one.
synonyms: categorize, compartmentalize, classify, characterize, label, brand, tag, designate, grade, codify, sort, rank, rate.
"people everywhere wish to pigeonhole you"

When it comes to care, pigeonholing is possibly the worst case scenario for service users and their families.

As we age there are some things that are almost guaranteed. You reach 4 or 5 and start school, you reach 17 and you get a provisional driving license, you reach 18 and you buy your first legal drink in the pub, you reach 30 and wish you could be 18 again....however there are many that are NOT so likely. You don’t reach 60 and automatically become a Daniel O'Donnell fan, or learn to knit once you retire, you don’t reach 70 and all of a sudden the only thing that brings you joy is a cup of tea, and you certainly have not reached the end of gaining joy from new experiences.

When people think of elderly living in care homes they automatically think of music such as Vera Lynn; Vera Lynn was very popular during the Second World War, but country music was also big at this time with cowboy and western movies growing increasingly popular. Also swing such as big band, Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, and the 50s began pop and rock and roll trends which continued into the 60s with Bob Dylan, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. 

If we were to take the average age of someone living in a care home as 88 then in 1960 they would have been 30 and would have settled into a musical preference, so it is very likely that rock and roll and pop music would have been a large part of their lives. Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley were also massive musical influences of this era. And as time progresses, so should the music. As a child of the 90s I certainly hope that there will be some cheesy pop played at MY care home when I’m old!

Assuming that our elderly population won’t enjoy things that us “younger folk” do is scandalous to say the least. Computer games, Snapchat filters, disco dancing, pamper sessions, a trip down the pub, sports, movies, even verging out further to motorbikes and tram lining. Don’t rob people of joy, laughter and new experiences no matter WHAT their age or disability just because you think it doesn’t “fit” their persona.

There is always a first time for anyone trying something new, and that first time can open a world of enjoyment for many. There is nothing to say that one must be young to do things for the first time. In my own experience in my career our elderly friends are rarely put off by a new activity and natural curiosity overtakes any concern someone may have. Often with the later stages for PLWD the mind does not focus as largely on safety awareness or consequence which actually allows them to "go for it" with activities they previously may have been wary of.

Person centered care is a massive focus for health professionals at the moment and with this in mind we must try and focus on people in our care as individuals and not per unit, or per care home, or per hospital ward.

Personal preference with ANYTHING is just that! Personal! People don’t fit into categories. They may look one way and really surprise you with what makes them tick. Never judge a book by its cover.

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Baytree Court

Baytree Court is a very relaxed home, pleasant staff and one of the nicest homes I visit, always get a smile. Service users seem happy.

Glenys Newbury - Health Care Community Worker

Almond View Care Home

To all the staff at Almond View - a big thank you for looking after Mum, with such kindness and dedication. Despite living 400 miles away, I always had a good feeling that she was in good hands. When I did visit, the staff without exception, stopped to chat to us even though they were extremely busy. Please accept my heart felt thank you to you all - a real credit to Almond View.

Carol

Bankview Care Home

Thank you for the excellent level of care that my father, Frank Boyle, has received. Bankview demonstrated for us the template for a care home and how it should feel and be run. Friendly, welcoming, excellent care levels, length of time staff remain loyal to the home and above all a clear and comforting atmosphere of great leadership.

Barbara and Jan

Social Work Department

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Bankview Day Care Centre

Bankview Day Care Centre

I understand why mum loves coming to Bank view Day-care it’s a home from home and the activities offered are excellent

J Campbell

Bankview Day Care Centre

The day care centre has made a huge difference to my life. Best thing I ever done, my week was boring now I have days out and shopping trips and good company.

R Burns

Baytree Court Care Home

We can not thank you enough for all the care, support and attention the staff at Baytree Court have given Marc. The staff have always given their time and support to us on visits which has meant a great deal.

Doreen and Yvonne

Beechwood Care Home

Both mum and I were most impressed with Beechwood and we have decided that is where we would like Dad to come to. You have put both mine and mum's minds at rest knowing that Dad will be looked after.

Thank You

Susan Gibson

K Macdonald in memory of my Aunt Jean

I can't exaggerate the admiration I have for the management and staff of Craigielea. I've never experienced so much patience, coaxing, kindness and care. These people share their lives and emotions, laugh and cry and mourn for the people who entrust themselves to care.

Craigielea Care Home

J Ellis in memory of Steve

The staff talked about my best friend being an inspiration to them, despite his illness It made me change my approach with him, instead of being despondent and sad, I spoke with him the way we had always been with each other. The staff saw him as a person.

Craigielea Care Home

Shelagh Goldie

My uncle, who is a retired GP, recently visited Dad on a trip over from Canada and commented that Craigielea is one of the best places he has ever seen in his experience of elderly care units. Very homely, calm, relaxing and wonderful staff. Keep up the fantastic work you do!

Craigielea

Cranham Court

I am writing to put on record how grateful, I and my family, are for the excellent care George received while in your care. He could not have had more or better care.  Please pass on to your staff our appreciation of their kindness, help and caring attention we all received.

From the greeting at my first visit,  I felt the genuine care and pride in their work shown by your staff.  I cannot praise too highly, all of your caring staff for their dedication. I thank you so much.  

Beryl Ford and Family

Cranham Court

My mother was placed in this home by Queen's Hospital, Romford, on Gold Standard End of Life care. Consequently, she was only there for a short period of six weeks. During that period she was kept safe, warm and clean and was treated kindly with respect. The patience of the nursing/support staff was outstanding. Everyone from Matron, Admin, Cleaning and Laundry staff was caring, considerate and obliging. True professionalism and quality of care. 

Tudy Cannin in memory of Mrs I M Haselgrove

Cranham Court

A lovely home with working professional angels. Cannot recommend this enough. My mother was really looked after and her needs were met. They cared, supported, listened and had empathy. The home has beautiful grounds, rooms lovely warm and cosy and always a welcoming helpful face around.Will always be grateful for everything they all did.

Grandholm Care Home

In all my visits I have been most impressed with the Care and Attention shown by all your staff, who are professional and courteous at all times. We are always welcomed with a friendly smile which makes us feel very much part of the home and being involved

J Barber

Grandholm Care Home

Please accept my sincere congratulations for performance and efficiency of Grandholm Care Home. The home provides a very professional, caring and motivational environment with an abundance of patience and understanding. The home is a credit to your team and one of the best in Aberdeen.

I McCormack

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