Did you know self-neglect can manifest in several different ways? From poor personal hygiene to ignoring medical conditions; self-neglect is often complex.
We sat down with Cath, a Frontline Manager at MacIntyre in Rochdale, to discuss how the team support people to move away from behaviours of self-neglect.
How do you and the team go about keeping someone safe from self-neglect?
"For some people we support, their mental health is a big factor and is often in decline, which results in self-neglect.
For us, it's all about pre-planning, which is imperative. Not every day has to be structured, but it's about finding out what motivates that person. Often, a person might be in a cycle of feeling down, but it's important to communicate with them when they are in a better place, to understand what you can do when they are showing signs of self-neglect. This way, you are prepared when they return to that cycle and can put plans in place."
Can you share a time you have supported someone through self-neglect?
"Recently, a gentleman we have supported for ten years was experiencing a low cycle and self-neglect. As a team, we had to find a fine balance between providing meaningful prompts to support this gentleman, whilst also learning when to back away and give him time. For him, it was about finding things he enjoyed to do and taking his focus away from himself. One of our solutions was to support the gentleman to look after a dog. For the gentleman, it was a sense of responsibility that he hadn't had before and we quickly found he put the dog's needs before his own. This resulted in improving his behaviour. Before he would have not gone shopping, despite needing food in the house. But with the dog, he would actively get showered and dressed and make his way to the shop to buy food for himself and the dog.”
What are some of the first signs that someone is experiencing self-neglect?
- Neglecting personal hygiene
- People not washing their clothes
- People stop engaging in activities such as going shopping for food and keeping their cupboards stocked
If you would like to find out more about how we support people from self-neglect at MacIntyre, please contact: