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Caring for someone with dementia

The following offer information about dementia 

Dementia

Find out what help and support is available if you are struggling to cope with dementia

How to get help with Dementia

As we get older, we all begin to lose some of our mental abilities, like thinking and remembering. This is a normal process of ageing. However sometimes this is more severe, and your doctor may decide it is dementia.

What is dementia?

There are many different types of dementia and causes, Alzheimer's is a type of dementia.   It can also be caused by a stroke or other health conditions. Dementia is most often a slow but steady loss of mental abilities, such as thinking and remembering.Dementia can cause confusion, memory loss and changes in personality and behaviour. It usually affects people who are aged over 60, but sometimes younger people can develop it. About 1 in 5 people over the age of 80 will develop dementia.

There is no cure for dementia at the moment but treatment is sometimes available that will help maintain independence for longer.  Most people do not develop dementia but it is becoming more common as people live longer.

Caring for someone with dementia

A lot of people are living with dementia in the community. It is becoming much more common because it can be associated with old age and we are living longer. This means more people are caring for a relative or friend with dementia. This can be hard emotionally and physically.

Caring for someone with dementia can be a very difficult task. People with dementia need a lot of support and care: and so do their carers.

As a carer, you might need to:

  • Understand dementia better;
  • Learn how to respond to the changes in behaviour that dementia can cause;
  • Find out what financial and legal help is available to you;
  • Explore care options for the person you care for; and
  • Prepare for the future.

Click here for more information about being a carer

There are a number of local and national organisations that can offer support and guidance.

North East London NHS Foundation Trust (NELFT)

NELFT provide healthcare to people in Barking and Dagenham and across North East London. They offer mental health services including help for people with dementia.

You might get referred to a memory clinic by your doctor to help you deal with your symptoms. NELFT also provide memory assessments for younger people who are worried about dementia. They have special nurses called Admiral Nurses who are trained in mental healthcare.

The memory clinic will provide a specialist diagnosis and assessment by doctors and other specialists.  They will recommend treatment, like medication, which aims to help the person with dementia remain independent in the community, and also organise other services if needed, including support for carers.

North East London Foundation Trust (NELFT)
Phone: 0300 555 1200 
Web: www.nelft.nhs.uk

Carers of Barking and Dagenham
Address: 334 Heathway, Dagenham, Essex, RM10 8NJ
Phone: 020 8593 4422
Web: www.carerscentre.org.uk
Email: carers@carerscentre.org.uk

Carers of Barking and Dagenham's Memory Lane Cafe
Address: Memory Lane Resource Centre, Porters Avenue, Dagenham (next to the Porters Avenue Health Centre)
Phone: 020 8593 4422
Web: http://www.carerscentre.org.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=22&Itemid=25

The Memory Lane Resource Centre has a special support service for people aged over 55 with dementia. People with dementia can take part in activities and meet people. This support service also offers respite, or a short break, for carers, because they can leave the person they care for in a safe environment.

The centre also provides a resource and information site for carers including a  peer support network for carers in the borough. Meet other carers, get advice and information, and attend the Memory Lane Resource Centre. This is a special service especially for people with dementia and their carers.

Older Adults Mental Health Services in Barking & Dagenham
Address: Broad Street Centre, Morland Road, Dagenham, Essex. RM10 9HU
Phone: 0300 555 1016

A team committed to helping older people to deal with mental health problems.

Admiral Nursing DIRECT
Phone: 0300 555 1016
Email: direct@dimentiauk.org

Admiral Nurses are specially trained to care for people with dementia.

Alzheimers Society
Phone: 0300 222 1122 (national) OR 020 8517 4522 (Barking and Dagenham) 01708 739 293 (Havering) &0844 6001197 (Redbridge)
Web: www.alzheimers.org.uk

If you need support or think that you need Adult Social Care Services, call the Adult Intake and AccessTeam on 020 8227 2915.

Dementia Choices (NHS Choices)

NHS choices offers information for people with dementia and their families and friends. It aims to raise awareness of dementia, as well as help people create networks and better understand the impact of the condition. There are also links to lots of information on dementia and sources of local and national support.

For more information on Dementia choices click here