Combating Dementia – Helping Those Who Need It
What Is Dementia?
A recently held G8 summit (a gathering of the leaders of the 8 most powerful countries in the world) was dedicated to dementia and all the issues that come along with it, in order to come up with some ideas to help those who suffer from the condition; find a way to prevent it and help those who care for patients.
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.
One of the common issues that the G8 nations all face is that of an aging population. Having an aging population means that there is a great strain on the health and welfare systems to help these people; as well as a grater strain on care homes. This is an issue because as the population is aging people have less children and grandchildren as the past and as such are less independent.
Outcomes Of The G8 Dementia Summit
Following on from the summit in December 2013 it is hoped that a lot more research can be done to help work towards prevention and curing dementia. The UK government alone, has set aside double the funding for research to be done into research; as globally is expected that by 2050 the number of people suffering will have trebled.
Alongside this a scan has been devised that will be made available on the NHS in order to help diagnose Alzheimer’s disease which is the most common form of dementia and often goes undetected thus meaning that a lot of people can be suffering in one way or another without ever receiving the right care or attention.
What Dementia Aids Are Available?
Whilst things won’t get better over night, belief is high that like previous summits about AIDS or cancer then this has been a positive one; until then there are a range of dementia aids and dementia furniture 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.