Caring For Someone With Dementia

What Is Dementia?

Dementia, is a condition that involves a person losing their cognitive abilities. However this is not the same as the normal levels of cognitive deterioration that are a part of the aging process. Sometimes dementia can have a progressive effect due to disease or damage; however it can also stay the same if the sufferer has had an injury to their brain. Most cases of Dementia present in older people, however it can happen prior to aging and this is known as early onset dementia.

In a country that has an aging population, like Britain, then the numbers of people suffering from dementia are likely to increase. As such it is important that people have an understanding of what dementia is, and how people suffering from it can be treated and helped to live with a degree of normality. World Health Organisation statistics suggested that the worldwide number of sufferers was around 35.6 million in 2010 and is set to rise by around 70% by 2050.

If dementia is diagnosed early on, then steps can be taken in order to make sure that the patient can have a n improved quality of life, some of these steps include dementia aids. It is important for the patient to be helped to try and retain as much independence as possible, in order to help the patient feel that they are still in control of their lives, and also to ease the pressure on those caring for them.

One way in which life can be made easier for the sufferer and the care giver, is the use of dementia aids and dementia products. These products are designed to stand out to the patient, so that they know what the items are and what they are for. A recent speech from David Cameron emphasised the seriousness of dementia in the UK and outlined how hospitals and other facilities will be made more dementia friendly, to help patients and care givers feel more at home and comfortable.

What Dementia Aids Are Available?

There are a range of dementia aids available that will  help those giving care to a dementia patient and patients themselves cope better include:

-          Memory boxes – these have become increasingly popular, they are designed to keep things that have a meaning to the patient from aspects of their lifetime as a way for those caring for them to jog their memory about the past and have things to use as a conversation starter, to help your patient feel at home.

-          Toileting Aids – in order to help your patients have a better ability to retain their independence aids such as brightly coloured toilets seats can help your patients remember what needs to take place. Similarly other aids in the bathroom such as grab rails and other support devices can help those who struggle with manoeuvrability.

-          Incontinence Products – although the two aren’t always related, one side effect of dementia can be incontinence – in order to ease the embarrassment of this as a condition, incontinence products are available which allow the patient to carry on with life as normal as possible, in a dignified manner.

What Are The Most Appropriate Dementia Aids?

There are no right or wrong options in terms of selecting dementia aids, different patients will have different needs! The most important thing to consider when caring for someone with dementia is to try as much as possible to interact with them as normal, and try and instil a feeling of independence. By using various dementia aids, then the patient can have a sense of still having their personal freedom and this can help reduce the strain on their carers.