Caring for a person with dementia

In the past we tended to presume that the person with dementia lost their individuality and personality during the course of their illness. As physical damage occurred to the brain, their value as a person was assumed to diminish. People with dementia were sometimes not treated as individuals in their own right.

An approach to dementia care which recognises the personal history, character and individuality of the person with dementia has been shown to have a positive impact on the progress of the disease. ADI has produced a charter of principles for the care of people with dementia and their carers.

Advice

Advice about caring for a person with dementia is offered by Alzheimer's Society and many associations around the world. You can find them in our list of associations.

Alzheimer's Speaks provides help and support for carers. They host an international resource directory, videos, articles, personal writings, podcasts, webinars and more.

Treatments

While there is no cure for Alzheimer's disease or for most other causes of dementia at present, many of the problems associated with dementia such as restlessness and depression can be treated. It may also be possible, especially in the early stages of dementia, to improve someone's memory with medication.

It is also possible to help people with dementia and their caregivers in a variety of practical ways. These include developing ways of caring for people with dementia which build on the strengths and abilities of those affected. This ensures that people with dementia maintain a sense of well-being and individuality throughout their illness.

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