My relative is having problems with memory and managing everyday things. How can I get them a diagnosis of dementia?

Support the person to go to the GP. Your GP will do a dementia screen and ‘rule out’ any physical causes of the cognitive changes. Ask your GP to refer the person to the local Memory Service for more in-depth tests if you’re still concerned. This could result in a diagnosis and further treatment and support.

 

My mother needs to move into long term care – what should I think about?

Contact Social Services to see how much support they can give you, discuss finances and get information about local homes. Make sure the home is registered for people who have dementia – use a ‘checklist’ to make sure you ask all the questions you need to. Prepare a ‘Life Story’ book and share this with the care home before they meet your parent. Be open with the home – think of the future care of your parent as being a ‘partnership’ with them.

 

My father is more confused and his condition has deteriorated – he’s not eating and he’s become aggressive. What can I do?

Think about his physical health first. Ask the GP to see him – any sudden change is likely to be due to a physical cause, e.g., infection, pain or constipation (these all cause increased confusion). Also consider the environment; how people are interacting with him and his mental health (he may be anxious or depressed). Only after these have been considered should you put any perceived changes down to an advance in the progress of dementia.

 

If you have any questions or need advice do contact Admiral Nursing DIRECT on 0845 257 9406 or email direct@dementiauk.org where you can speak to an experienced Admiral Nurse.