The Mental Health Foundation (MHF)’s “Dementia: what is truth?” report explores strategies for handling the different realities and beliefs held by persons with dementia. It concludes, perhaps realistically, that judicious use of non-truths and half-truths may be justified if deployed to support the wellbeing patients and the relative peace of their families / carers.
Kartalova-O’Doherty, Y. Morgan, K. Willetts, A. [and] Williamson, T. (2014). Dementia: what is truth? Exploring the real experience of people living with more severe dementia. A Mental Health Foundation national inquiry. A rapid literature review. London: Mental Health Foundation (MHF), September 2014.
“Truth-telling remains hugely important in terms of good communications. However, ‘untruths’, where they attempt to meet the person with dementia in their reality, can be seen as strategic therapeutic interventions in providing person-centred communication”.
Judging by the length of time this report took to come to light, there must have been much controversy in reviewing and digesting the conclusions in this work.