Students turn dementia into reality

Nursing department host health fair to educate on diseases

The Nurse Education Department and Level I nursing students hosted an informative health fair talking about many different diseases and conditions in the Harvin Center on Nov 27. The topics they talked about were specific content they learned about this semester.

A few of the topics featured were insomnia, heat stroke, C. Diff, dementia, glaucoma and many more. The students were assigned what topics their groups were to present and talk about to the community.

“We’re having a health fair this year; each group gets a different topic to speak about. Ours is glaucoma, but we try to cover a little bit of everything we learned throughout the semester,” Dalia Martinez said.

Even though the students were assigned which topic to cover, they still felt passionate about their subject and wanted to inform everyone the importance of it. Viviane Aguilera, member of the group talking about C. Diff, talked about how important hand washing is.

“Not many people wash their hands or know the importance of washing hands. They need to know they can’t rely on hand sanitizer all the time. Hand sanitizer does not work on C. Diff,” Aguilera said. “C. Diff is a bacteria that naturally grows in your colon. It cleans out all the good bacteria and leaves room for all the bad bacteria. Something as simple as hand washing can prevent something so serious. The only thing that kills it when you’re cleaning is bleach. ”

Along with the different interactive activities and games used to teach others about healthy living and tips, there was also a Virtual Dementia Tour.

The Virtual Dementia Tour is a simulated experience used to raise awareness about dementia and how to care for those who suffer from it. During the simulation you are given various objects to wear to simulate the effects of dementia. A few of them were glasses with peripheral vision blocked out, headphones that added and amplified sound, gloves to demonstrate loss of hand use, and more. Before entering the room you are given instructions to complete tasks within the set time limit. You can’t ask questions or ask for help during the simulation. The tasks given were simple, such as folding towels, putting on a sweater, setting a table and more.

“The point of the tour is to give people perspective about what people who have dementia go through. Completing tasks that are simple to us can be hard for someone who has dementia,” Audrey Nunez said.

Nursing students all have a specific reason they decide to go into this field of work, reasons ranging from family to wanting to help specific people. Audrey Nunez, part of the dementia tour, said her reason is to help kids.

“Since I was really little I wanted to be a pediatrician and my mom’s a nurse so it’s kind of been in my blood since I was younger,” Nunez said, “I really want to go work at Driscoll, but before that I think I’m going to work at a regular hospital on a regular floor for a few years and learn whatever I can before I specialize with children.”

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