Tag Archives: alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s Awareness Month: Rosie’s Story

September is World Alzheimer’s Month, an international campaign every September to raise awareness and challenge the stigma that surrounds dementia.

Here’s Rosie’s story, who cared for her husband Den who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

“I found the Carers’ Centre about six years ago –I was referred by my GP. I was caring 24/7 for my husband Den, who had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and on top of that I had a very difficult full-time job. There was a week when I had come down with a cold – just a cold – and it was just the absolute end of the tether for me. I was exhausted.  I didn’t know what to do with Den or how to manage being unwell for a few days. I think that was the point for me when I thought I needed to get some support.

“The first thing the Carers’ Centre did for me was to send me to Ammerdown, a wellness centre, for a 24 hour respite. It was just incredible. I had a bath. I went for a walk. It sounds silly but when you’re caring for someone with Alzheimer’s, telling them you’re going up to have a bath doesn’t mean anything. It’s just not possible. Continue reading Alzheimer’s Awareness Month: Rosie’s Story

Carla Cares: Carers Advice Column

Q: My mum has recently been diagnosed with dementia and I’m finding it difficult to know how to respond when she behaves out of character or says things that I know aren’t true. I was wondering if there is anything I can read or any training I could do that might help me learn how to deal with this?

Many carers find it difficult to know what to do when a loved one with dementia begins to act differently. We’ve put together some advice for communicating and where to find more information.

Try to make sure you’re being as clear as possible when speaking to someone with dementia.

  • Use names, i.e. saying ‘it’s me, Jane,’ rather than ‘it’s me.’
  • Speak in a warm tone and give them extra time to respond to you.
  • Try giving options instead of open questions, such as ‘would you like chicken or beef for dinner?’ rather than ‘what would you like for dinner?’
  • Use non-verbal cues like pictures and touch.
  • Don’t quibble over mistakes or even delusions the person might have, instead try deflecting to a new topic.

Continue reading Carla Cares: Carers Advice Column

Shining a Light on our Amazing Carers

A relieved Katy after her 10,000ft skydive!
A relieved Katy after her 10,000ft skydive!

At The Carers’ Centre, we aim to shine a light and give a voice to carers who often go unnoticed in society. Carers perform an inspirational role and sacrifice so much when they look after someone, and we are constantly amazed by their resilience and bravery. This blog post aims to highlight just a few of the wonderful things our carers have achieved.

In July 2015, Katy did a Skydive for us, helping to raise over £1000 for the centre. These funds helped to buy our Woodlands centre, providing a permanent home for carers in BANES. The following month, one of our carers Tracey was featured on ITV’s Lorraine, speaking with her husband Paul about his early-onset Alzheimer’s. In October it was a delight to name Tracey (along with Becky and Jennie) as an ‘Unsung Hero’ for her bravery and determination.

Featuring in our latest edition of CareTime, Donna Smith cares for her four grandchildren and lost 30lbs in 30 weeks through our Community Activator programme. She now feels happier and healthier thanks to Jane and Kath, and leads a more active life.

Many of our carers feel empowered enough to start businesses, managing work around their caring role and turning a hobby into profit. Some carers even bring their creations to our biannual Craft Fayres, helping to raise money for the Centre as well as for themselves.

Other carers use their confidence and initiative to set up groups, both at our Centres and within their local communities. For instance Jayne saw a need for a support group at her child’s school, and now runs a regular group for up to fifty parents. Meanwhile, at our Bath centre, Bev runs a regular support group for carers of people with challenging mental health conditions.

These wonderful people prove how determined carers can be, and that despite having complex home lives, they are willing to give back to the community. We’re so grateful for all their hard work and determination and can’t wait to see them all soon!

Why We Need Woodlands: Rosie’s Story

Rosie Cole – A Place to Relax

SONY DSC
Rosie & Den.

Rosie joined the Carers’ Centre six years ago when she was struggling to care for her husband Den, who has Alzheimer’s.

‘I was caring 24/7 for my husband Den, who had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and I had a very difficult full-time job. I had come down with a cold – just a cold – and it was just the end of the tether for me. I was absolutely exhausted.  I didn’t know what to do with Den or how to manage being unwell for a few days,’ said Rosie.

The Carers’ Centre introduced Rosie to a peer support group where she could meet people in similar situations.

‘To see other carers in those situations really reminds you that you’re not alone or isolated. People can tell you that they know about Alzheimer’s but until you’ve lived with it 24/7, you don’t know. Speaking to someone who really does understand makes all the difference,’ she said.

‘Without the Carers’ Centre I would really be struggling. Their help meant I could keep working for a much longer period of time. It kept me sane and it allowed me to have my own life,’ said Rosie.

Woodlands provides a safe space for carers to come and take time out, even if it’s just half an hour for a cup of tea or to read a book. Things that while we may take for granted, for carers can mean the difference between coping and not.