Worried about dementia? Devon carers offer free expert tips

World Alzheimer’s Month

TO HELP mark World Alzheimer’s Month next month (September 2020) the team from a Devon home care provider is offering expert advice to people on spotting the condition’s early warning signs.

Guardian Homecare carers, who care for people in the Exeter and Torbay areas, are trained to recognise dementia and they wish to share their knowledge to help raise awareness.

Catherine Porter who manages Guardian Homecare, which cares for people in the Exeter and Torbay areas, explains: “The Alzheimer’s Society says there are 850,000 people with dementia in the UK, with numbers set to rise to more than one million by 2025 and two million by 2051.

“As part of World Alzheimer’s Month, we wanted pass on our expertise, so people know exactly what to look out for among their family and friends.

“Some of the early signs include:

  • Memory loss that upsets day-to-day living
  • Issues solving problems
  • Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home or work
  • Confused about the time or place
  • Trouble understanding visuals and spatial relationships
  • New problems with writing or speaking words
  • Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
  • Decreased or poor judgement
  • Withdrawing from work or social activities
  • Mood swings or changes in personality.

“These signs could be a one-off, but if you notice them regularly appearing during a period of time, we would advise the person seeks medical advice. It could be nothing but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

“In our line of work, we are able to spot these signs in the service users we look after and our carers will alert management who will broach the subject with the service user’s family, and it will be recommended that they seek medical advice.

“Carers are also trained to manage the challenging behaviours associated with dementia including accusations, aggression, delusions, repetitive behaviour, suspicion and shouting.

“We are passionate about empowering our carers with the best possible skills and knowledge. Our training starts at the very beginning of a carer’s career and is then continued through the Social Care Institute for Excellence training, which includes a specialist dementia care training programme.”

More than 225,000 people will develop dementia this year, which is one every three minutes.

One in six people over the age of 80 have dementia and there are more than 40,000 people under the age of 65 with dementia.

Catherine added: “The main reason for the increase in people with the disease is the fact that we are living longer. Type two diabetes and obesity rates are also rising and playing a part in the rise of dementia sufferers, along with other risk factors such as smoking, drinking, high blood pressure, poor diet and lack of exercise.

“Having a diagnosis of dementia doesn’t mean a person has to lose control of their life or independence. Many people continue to live fulfilled and happy lives for many years. We’re able to provide dementia care services and support and anyone interested or needing advice, should give us a call on 01803 853198.”

Guardian Homecare employs nearly 200 domiciliary carers in south Devon to look after its service users in their own homes and it is currently searching for 100 new honest and kind-hearted individuals to help add to its teams.

Catherine continued: “We offer new a 12-week on-boarding programme working towards a care certificate. We also offer flexible working hours, both full and part-time, as well as competitive wages and generous holiday allocation.

“It is a great opportunity for people to achieve a recognised qualification and they’ll also be able to have access to exclusive discounts online and in-store from retailers including Tesco, Primark and Argos, and it also covers holidays and electrical goods.”

Guardian Homecare offers training and the opportunity for internal advancement. Anyone who joins the team can create a career path using the different qualifications they achieve.

New recruits are given free uniforms, access to national staff discount scheme for many major brands, as well as 28 days paid holiday, paid travel between calls and paid mileage.

Anyone wishing to find out more about Guardian Homecare, should call 01803 853198 or visit www.guardianhomecare.co.uk or https://www.facebook.com/GuardianHomecareUK/jobs/.

The Exeter Daily