Carers’ Group: 13th May

News, information and discussion

Armchair travel experiences

We started with a brief presentation about the benefits of armchair travel – see the world (and beyond) without moving from your favourite chair.

Alzheimer’s Show at Olympia 7-8 June.

One of the group said she had been to this event in the past and found it useful, and was going again this year.

“The UK’s leading event for people living with Alzheimer’s, dementia or memory loss, The Alzheimer’s Show brings help and hope to families and carers and welcomes the public and professionals. The event is for anyone who is experiencing memory loss, has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or is living with dementia should come along to access a wealth of support and guidance on planning for their future. Families affected by Alzheimer’s, carers and professional support service providers should attend to find the latest advice, services and products to help those in their care.”

50% off Alzheimer’s show here (£10 reduced from £20 – there are concessions too).

Vision Call

A member had said her mother had used this totally free service, inclusive of glasses. She found them very understanding and helpful.

This organisation can provide sight tests in the comfort of your own home by their team of home visit optometrists, dispensing opticians and optical assistants.”We are dedicated to enabling and empowering individuals to see the world around them more clearly. Our patients are some of the most vulnerable people in our society, and our specialist holistic approach to eye care means that they can benefit from being more engaged with the world around them, feel less isolated and be safer within it.”

Glasses and dentures can be etched with a person’s name – which helps if they go missing in a care home – ask your provider for this service.

Dementia Carers Count

A member of the group attended one of their free courses in Birmingham and found it very useful. The group was made up of 15 carers – who were open and supportive. They had the chance to learn more about dementia and share their experience – as well as benefitting from a break from caring duties. Our group member says she now feels in control, more assertive and has got her energy back.

“Our core Dementia Carer Support Course has been developed for friends and family of people with dementia and aims to support a wide range of carers in different situations. This expert-led, 3 day residential course is run throughout the year and is designed with carers’ needs in mind. Carers attending this course will have an opportunity to gain a better understanding of their friend or family member, the type of dementia they have, and to explore different ways of responding to challenges. There will be time to think about your own well-being and you will be provided with a range of tools to enhance your resilience.

As a charity we do not make a profit. We are fortunate to have reserves from the sale of the assets of our previous charity (we used to own care homes) to invest in the development and start-up costs of our new services. It costs the charity £650 per carer to deliver the course, including food and accommodation. We do not want anyone to be excluded from our services so we are not charging a fee for our courses. Therefore, we invite course participants to donate to the charity on completion of the course, if they are able to. A donation of £5 pays for a coffee break for a carer, £15 pays for a carer’s lunch and £300 pays for an expert course facilitator for a day. All donations, big or small, make such a difference.”

The Chimp Paradox

The above book was mentioned on the course. The member attending the course found the book insightful and she has since bought a copy. Interestingly, Janet and I have recently discovered this book and been reading it.

The Chimp Paradox is an incredibly powerful mind management model that can help you become a happy, confident, healthier and more successful person.” More on this next time – a very interesting read.

Respite Care

We revisited the benefits of care homes for short periods of respite. Some group members had been surprised that some care homes expect a minimum stay of two weeks. A break of this length can be difficult, especially for a carer who is trying respite for the first time – there are emotional hurdles to be negotiated.

Continuing care assessment for someone with dementia

Two members of the group had been successful in assessments. They found the process stressful, confusing and with many pitfalls, but worthwhile in the end. The link above gives the Alzheimer’s Society’s tips on how to approach an assessment.

 

And for those who wish to try something different

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy

I am on a training course at Lewisham Hospital for emotional resilience following cancer treatment – it is interesting and we could all do with some resilience!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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