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Relatives' experiences of encountering the older person with acute confusional state: experiencing unfamiliarity in a familiar person
Ersta Sköndal University College, Department of Health Care Sciences.
Mälardalens högskola.
2008 (English)In: International Journal of Older People Nursing, ISSN 1748-3735, Vol. 3, no 4, 243-251 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Aims and objectives. The aim was to understand the lived experience of close relatives encountering older persons with acute confusional state.

Background. Little is known about relatives of patients with acute confusional state and their experiences while encountering a family member exhibiting acute confusional state.

Design. A descriptive phenomenological research approach was used.

Methods. Data were collected by interviewing 10 close relatives of older people with acute confusional state at two hospital wards.

Results. Relatives experience the encounter as encountering a familiar person who has suddenly become unfamiliar, struggling to separate the familiar from the unfamiliar and trying to understand the causes of acute confusional state and the behaviour of the person. Six constituents illuminate the phenomenon: 'change in the other person', 'rapid and unexpected changes', 'experiencing insecurity in the encounter', 'trusting or mistrusting the other person', 'experiencing loss' and 'experiencing exposure'.

Relevance to clinical practice. It is important for professional carers to support relatives on how to encounter the person with acute confusional state, and to co-operate with relatives to gain knowledge about the unique person behind the acute confusional state.

Conclusion. Relatives' difficulties in dealing with strong emotions evoked within the encounter, experiencing limitation and lack of trust is essential knowledge for professional carers in all care settings.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 3, no 4, 243-251 p.
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:esh:diva-66DOI: 10.1111/j.1748-3743.2008.00125.xOAI: oai:DiVA.org:esh-66DiVA: diva2:317804
Available from: 2010-05-05 Created: 2010-05-05 Last updated: 2011-04-06Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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