Dementia and Dementia Care in Wandsworth

When any of us are presented with bad news regarding our health, it can be very difficult, even if it is expected.

When any of us are presented with bad news regarding our health, it can be very difficult, even if it is expected. Such is the case when any of us or a family member receives the distressing news that dementia is suspected.

If it is ourselves, we worry about being a burden to others. If it is a loved one, we worry about their safety, quality of life, and state of mind.

The rational part of our mind knows there is always the slight chance that we or a loved one may experience this illness later in life. Nonetheless, when it does happen, it can be upsetting and difficult to come to terms with.

Dementia Defined

Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental processes that are severe enough to interfere with one’s daily life. It is not a specific disease but an overall term that describes a whole host of symptoms typically associated with a decline in memory or other cognitive skills.

There is an erroneous belief that dementia and senility amounting to a serious mental decline is a normal part of the aging process. This is just not true.

Dementia Treatment and Care

Treatment of dementia is dependent on its cause. In most cases, there is no cure or treatment available that will slow or stop its progression. There are, however, drug treatments that can temporarily improve some symptoms. The same drug therapies that are used for Alzheimers are often prescribed to help with symptoms of other dementias.

10 Warning Signs

This is a list of 10 warning signs of dementia. Everyone will experience them to certain degrees from time to time, but if you have cause for concern, please see your doctor.

  1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life
  2. Repeated challenges in planning or solving problems
  3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work, or relaxing
  4. Confusion with the time or place
  5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
  6. New or worsening problems with words in speaking or writing
  7. Misplacing things more than usual and losing the ability to retrace one’s steps
  8. Decreased or worsening judgment
  9. Abnormal withdrawal from work or social activities
  10. Increased and prolonged changes in mood and personality

Be Easy on Yourself and Others

If you find that either you or a loved one may be dealing with dementia, remember to be kind to yourself and them. This is a difficult situation to become accustomed to for everyone involved. Seek out help and support; there are many organizations that will be more than willing to offer encouragement. Remember, you have done nothing wrong and there are support groups out there waiting for a chance to help.

How Home Instead Can Help

The services provided through the Home Instead, care agency are invaluable in helping your loved one cope with the challenges of Alzheimer’s disease or  related dementias. Our  Alzheimer’s and Dementia CARE training program prepares our network’s CAREGivers to:

  • Encourage engagement
  • Provide mind-stimulating activities
  • Supervise daily activities
  • Create social interaction
  • Help to maintain a safe environment
  • Provide nutritious meals
  • Help to manage changing behaviours

Home Instead CAREGivers provide the highest quality of care, changing the way people live with Alzheimer’s or other dementias.

Useful contacts include:

The Alzheimer’s Society

Tel; 0300 222 1122

Web: http://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/forum.php

Dementia UK

Tel;0845 257 9406

Web: http://www.dementiauk.org/

email: [email protected]

Age UK

Tel; 0800 1696565

Web: http://www.ageuk.org.uk/

By Tony O’Flaherty