Over 850,000 people have dementia in the UK, including 1 in 6 people over the age of 80. Each year, unpaid carers provide over 1.3 million hours of unpaid care to loved ones with dementia. Unpaid carers are overworked and under-supported and SuperCarers is here to help. We know that dementia can affect every part of a person’s life and can equally impact that of their carer – from their relationships, their mental health, and their physical well-being.
What does dementia care involve?
Dementia affects each person differently and it is for these reasons that SuperCarers endeavours to provide a personalised and holistic service. We understand the importance of supporting all those living with and affected by dementia to ensure that everyone maintains a high quality of life.
Carers will develop personalised care plans tailored to your loved one’s current abilities and symptoms. The plans are regularly reviewed and adapted as the disease progresses and skills change. Clients are empowered to remain safe and calm in their own home, encouraging engagement with daily activities, and creating social interactions.
Dementia care can also help to reduce the severity of symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and withdrawal from social life. Provided in conjunction with familiar routine and memory care activities, specialist care can help maintain your loved one’s dignity and independence whist providing mentally stimulating activities to help limit changing behavioural and cognitive symptoms.
What are the signs & symptoms?
Dementia is a progressive disease characterised by symptoms of memory loss and diminished capacity of a person to care for themselves of which Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type.
The 5 most common types of dementia are:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Lewy Body disease
- Vascular dementia
- Frontotemporal dementia
- Mixed dementia (most often Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia)
Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia and affects each person differently. It causes the brain to shrink dramatically, reducing a person’s ability to care for themselves and relate to others. It may even result in changes in personality and relationships. By age 85, the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease is almost 50 percent.
General Alzheimer’s symptoms
- Memory lapses
- Marked changes in mood or personality
- Trouble with abstract thinking
- Difficulty completing familiar activities
- Poor or impaired judgment
Lewy Body Dementia shows a similar pattern of decline to Alzheimer’s. Some early symptoms include sleep disturbances, followed by Parkinsonian-like tremors and stiffness, and also visual hallucinations.
Vascular dementia is a result of brain damage caused by multiple strokes. There are many overlapping symptoms with Alzheimer’s disease, although memory loss may not be as seriously apparent. An initial symptom is typically Impaired judgment or ability to make.
Frontotemporal dementia begins inside the forehead region of the brain. Symptoms generally develop at a younger age (around 60yo) and people survive fewer years than those with Alzheimer’s. Early symptoms include changes in personality and behaviour, and difficulty with language.
Increasing evidence suggests that many people have “mixed dementia” – more than one disorder present. The most common combination is Alzheimer’s and Vascular dementia.
Symptoms of dementia could be caused by multiple factors, such as advancing age, family history of other diseases, cardiovascular disease, or a history of head trauma. You may want to ask others to pay attention and keep track of unusual behaviours, mood changes, decisions but most importantly you should encourage your loved one to see a doctor.