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Dehumanising Language in Dementia Care Settings

Dehumanisation of people with dementia is a prevalent issue in aged care facilities. Unfortunately, people with dementia are at a particularly high risk of being subjected to dehumanising treatment due to challenges that dementia presents. This paper addresses this issue by examining the dehumanising language used towards people with dementia in aged care facilities. First, this paper identifies and defines the dehumanising language used towards people with dementia, and then discusses the factors that allow dehumanising language to arise. Next, this paper explores the consequences of dehumanising language on the quality of life of people with dementia. Finally, this paper proposes a solution to this problem: staff in aged care facilities should be adequately educated about dehumanising language through formal training, including being taught alternative wording and phrases that maintain the dignity of people with dementia.

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