For people unfortunate enough to be diagnosed with dementia, the world can seem a very lonely place. Much of what they once knew to be fact is taken away from them. The illness is cruel. It is important that care providers understand some of the effects it has on the patient. Dementia, often perceived as a disease that affects older people, can affect anyone regardless of age. In fact, over 40,000 people under 65 in the UK have dementia. This is called early-onset or young-onset dementia.
World Alzheimer’s Day
World Alzheimer’s Day takes place on 21 September. Its aim is to raise awareness of the disease. The Alzheimer Society wants to make sure that everyone affected by dementia knows that the organisation is there for them.
If you are considering a career in care, then you will need to learn about the complex care needs of people with all types of dementia. However, there are some key points worth remembering.
Not a natural part of ageing
Dementia is not a natural part of ageing. We all forget a name or a face sometimes, particularly as we get older, but dementia is something different. Dementia is caused by diseases of the brain. Diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease cause nerve cells to die, damaging the structure and chemistry of the brain. There are many variants of dementia, and no two are the same. In different types of dementia there is damage to different parts of the brain, which can lead to different symptoms and behaviours.
Although dementia often starts by affecting the short-term memory, there is much more to it than that. Dementia can also affect the way people think, speak, perceive things, feel and behave. Although there is currently no cure for dementia, there is support and treatments are available that can help with symptoms and managing daily life. People can still live well with dementia.
A career in caring
Having people around them that understand the condition and can treat them accordingly is very important to patients suffering from dementia. If this is something that interests you, regardless of your qualifications or educational background, you might be interested in a career in caring. If you would like to find out more about what has been described as one of the most rewarding jobs in the world, please get in touch with us.