Dementia: Caring for someone with it
Dementia is not a disease, but a word used to describe a group of symptoms or conditions which can include:-
- Difficulty in carrying out daily activities;
- A decline in the ability to think and reason carefully;
- Gradual loss of communication skills and memory.
The most common form of Alzheimer’s Disease is dementia, which affects over 500,000 people in the UK.
Being a carer to an individual suffering with dementia symptoms can cause challenging demands. A carer can be a family member, a friend or someone who works in the care industry and I will discuss some of the challenges faced by ‘home’ or ‘non-professional’ carers below.
It is common for family members to feel a sense of responsibility and anxiety at becoming a carer. This can lead to a feeling of being overwhelmed.
There are many organisations that offer local support for such carers within the community and carers can often obtain the benefit of that support, sometimes with assistance from the local authority.
It is important that the individual’s care needs are being met. Local authority assistance can be sought, and the carer can arrange for the local authority to review the individual’s personal circumstances and consider whether the current provisions are adequate.
The aim of a care needs assessment is to work out how much help you need. A local authority assessor can conduct the initial needs assessment over the phone or at the individual’s home.
The assessment is designed to find out what help and support is required. This may include a number of provisions:-
- Help in your home
- Residential and respite care
It will be the responsibility of the local authority to provide services to meet those needs. Local authorities will charge for the services they provided. However, the right for the local council to charge is not automatic. Before a decision is made for the services to be charged, the carer or the person needing care will be financially assessed. Once the financial assessment form has been completed, the local council will provide a breakdown of how they calculate any costs that are to be borne by the carer or the person needing care.
You can locate your local social services department by going online at www.gov.uk/find-your-local-council. Alternatively, we have a Court of Protection department who will be happy to provide assistance in regards to obtaining adequate support for the individual who requires care.
*Disclaimer: The information on the Anthony Gold website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. It is provided without any representations or warranties, express or implied.*