These can lead to increased confusion and make the symptoms of dementia worse. Common food-related problems include: forgetting what food and seeknig they like refusing or spitting out food asking for strange food combinations These behaviours can be due to a range of reasons, such as weeking, pain in the mouth caused by sore gums or ill-fitting dentures, or difficulty swallowing. How you can help Try to remember that the person isn't being deliberately awkward. Involve the person in preparing the meal if they're able to. Try these tips to make mealtimes less stressful: set aside enough time for meals offer food you know they like in smaller portions be prepared for changes in food tastes — try stronger flavours or sweeter foods provide finger foods if the person struggles with cutlery offer fluids in a clear glass or coloured cup that's easy to hold Make sure the person you care for has regular dental check-ups to help treat any causes of sweking or pain in the mouth. Alzheimer's Society has a useful factsheet on eating and seeeking.
But there's increasing recognition of the role of carers in helping someone stay independent with dementia and what their needs are.
How you can help Try to remember that the person isn't being deliberately awkward. Direct them to call TALK () to reach a hour crisis.
When someone you care about won’t seek support
How you can help Sleep disturbance may be a stage of dementia that'll settle over time. You may also want to try these tips: put a on the toilet door — pictures and words work well keep the toilet door open and keep a light on at night, or consider sensor lights look for s that the person may need the toilet, such as fidgeting or standing up or down try to keep the person active — a daily walk helps with regular bowel movements try to make going to the toilet part of a regular daily routine If you're still having problems with incontinence, ask your GP to refer the person to a continence adviser, who can advise on things like waterproof bedding or incontinence p.
Find out more about talking therapies Take a break from caring Taking regular breaks can help you to look after yourself and better support you in caring for someone with dementia. If the person you care about is in crisis, please encourage them to seek help immediately.
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Try these tips to make mealtimes less stressful: set aside enough time eomeone meals too food you know they like in smaller portions be prepared for changes in food tastes — try stronger flavours or sweeter foods provide finger foods if the person struggles with cutlery offer fluids in a clear glass or coloured cup that's easy to hold Make sure the person you care for has regular dental check-ups to help treat any causes of discomfort or pain in the mouth.
Help with washing and bathing Some people with dementia can become anxious about personal hygiene somene may need help with washing. Much of the research is aimed at understanding the causes of dementia and developing new treatments. Common food-related problems include: forgetting what food and drink they like refusing or spitting out food asking for strange food combinations These behaviours can be due to a range of reasons, such as confusion, pain in the mouth caused by sore gums or ill-fitting dentures, or difficulty swallowing.
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Involve the person in preparing the meal if they're able to. Talk to your GP or if you prefer, you can refer yourself directly to a psychological therapies service.
Other options include: day centres — social services somdone your local carers' centre should provide details of these in your area respite care — this can be provided in your own home or for a short break in a care home Find out more about respite care Dementia research There are dozens of dementia research projects going on around the world, and many of these are based in the UK.
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Alzheimer's Society has a useful factsheet on eating and drinking. If it's difficult for you to be able to attend regular carers groups, one of the online forums: Alzheimer's Society Talking Point forum If seking struggling to cope Carers often find it difficult to talk about the stress involved with caring.
Charities and voluntary organisations provide valuable support and advice on their websites and via their helplines: Age UK's Advice Line on free Independent Age on free Dementia UK Admiral Nurse Dementia helpline on free Carers Direct helpline on free Carers UK on free Talk to other carers Sharing your experiences with other carers can be a great support as they understand what you're going through.
How you can help Although it may be hard, it's important to be understanding about toilet problems. Looking after yourself Caring for a partner, relative or close friend with dementia is demanding and can be stressful. If you feel like you're not managing, don't feel guilty. Help-seeking can give you a chance to talk about how your mental ill-health They feel comfortable talking to me about their problems because they know.
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Problems can be caused by: urinary tract infections UTIs constipation, which can cause added pressure on the bladder some medicines Sometimes the person with dementia may simply forget they need the toilet or where the toilet is. They may try to get dressed as they're not aware sreking night-time. So if you're not comfortable talking to someone in person, that may be the way to go. Family and friends may be able to provide short breaks for you to have time "just for you".
Help with incontinence and using the toilet People with dementia may often experience problems with going to the toilet. It can also be very upsetting for the person you care for and for you.
You may benefit from counselling or another talking therapy, which may be available online. Both urinary incontinence and bowel incontinence can be difficult to deal with.
There's help and support available. These can lead to increased confusion and make the symptoms of dementia worse. They may worry about: bath water being too deep noisy rush of water from an overhead shower fear of falling being embarrassed at getting undressed in front of someone else, even their partner How you can help Washing is a personal, private activity, so try to be sensitive and respect the person's dignity.
Try to retain a sense of humour, if appropriate, and remember it's not the person's fault.
It's important to remember that your needs as a carer are as seeking as the person you're caring for. You can also share tips and advice.
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In the meantime, try seeking tips: put a dementia-friendly clock by the bed that shows whether it's night or day make sure the person has plenty of daylight and physical activity during the day cut out caffeine and alcohol in the evenings make sure the bedroom is comfortable and either have a night light or blackout blinds limit daytime naps if possible If sleep problems continue, talk to your GP or community nurse for advice.
Try these tips: ask the person how they'd prefer to be helped reassure the person you will not let them get hurt use a hel; seat or handheld shower gelp shampoo, shower gel or soap the person prefers be prepared to stay with the person if they don't want you to leave them someoje Alzheimer's Society has more tips in their factsheet on washing and bathing Sleep problems Dementia can affect people's sleep patterns and cause problems with a person's "body clock".
People with dementia may get up repeatedly during the night and be disorientated when they do so.