What is Dementia
Dementia is a broad category of brain diseases that causes gradual loss of the ability to think and reason clearly. Symptoms include deterioration in memory, thinking speed. mental agility, language, understanding and judgment on a level that affects everyday living.
Watch Dr Susie Henley and Dr Jon Rohrer describe what dementia is, how it relates to Alzheimer’s disease, and how these conditions affect the brain. (Credit to UCL 2016 – CC BY 4.0) https://view.vzaar.com/6253738/video/hd
People with dementia can lose interest in their usual activities, and may have problems controlling their emotions.
They may also find social situations challenging, and aspect of their personality may change. They may become unpredictable,lose empathy and even see and hear things that others do not.
Planning and organising may become difficult, which makes maintaining independence a problem. People with dementia usually need help from friends or relatives, including help with decision-making.
Though there is no cure for this condition, an early diagnosis can help people with dementia get the right treatment and support. so it is important to speak to your GP. As a carer getting the correct diagnosis for your loved one can also help you to prepare for the future journey and access the resources you will need.
Looking after somebody with dementia can be incredibly draining physically, emotionally and even demanding financially. Husbands, partners and wives have to come to terms with the irreversible and upsetting changes in their relationships, coupled with the gradual loss of the loved one they once knew.
There is also the fact that looking after some one can be very lonely. Being cut off from former social circles can bring feelings of isolation. Joining your local dementia care community can help to combat these feelings by introducing you to other people in a similar situation, as well as experts who are training to help and support you in your role of looking after a loved one.
How can WRAP help
We run a number of reminiscence workshops and dementia training courses aimed at helping carers of people living with dementia. We also offer a Carers an Information Support Programme known as
“Looking after a loved one living with dementia”(LAALO). This programme is free of charge and it will runs every week, for two hours, for a total eight week duration. Currently running at Briar Croft in Stratford upon Avon
The programme covers information on different topics that are helpful and aimed at facilitating the daily process with a loved one living with dementia. Most course participants when the programme finishes say “what are we going to do now”?
That is where past participants come in, linking to each other under the banner of “Wrappers” and continue to meet and support each other. They have been meeting at The Food of Love Café in Stratford-upon-Avon, every last Thursday of the month, for morning coffee. However, WRAP in 2015 set up the Cafe WRAP in Bishopton Community Centre and the following year 2016 the Cafe WRAP in Wellesbourne Village Hall.
“Our journey into the world of dementia was not typical”
A candid, courageous, heart felt portrayal of Heather Brown´s journey following her husband´s sudden loss of health, running up to the diagnosis of Vascular Dementia and how it turned into effective action and support to the local community.
Useful links and information
In the UK there’s a service called Join Dementia Research which matches volunteers (people with and people without dementia) with studies that are taking place, to study Dementia that is mainly inherited. The program is called Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer’s Network and the website https://www.joindementiaresearch.nihr.ac.uk/
A recent conference organised by the Kings Fund included a guest speaker Frank Arrojo, who spoke about his role of carer for his mum. Watch the video here: http://www.kingsfund.org.uk/audio-video/frank-arrojo-caring-loved-one-dementia