For families, friends and carers
We understand that a dementia diagnosis will affect more than just one individual. Seeing a loved one change can be a difficult and heart-breaking experience, and often the process of needing or delivering care can change family relationships significantly.
Read more about dealing with a dementia diagnosis.
Choosing a care home can be a difficult decision for the whole family. We believe in supporting each resident and their family in any way we can. We’re always here for emotional or practical support, and – with the appropriate consent – will always involve and consult families in the planning and delivery of care and support.
Guests are welcome to visit any time of the day or night and to take part in the care home’s activities, to help with their morning or evening routines, or just share in a relaxing meal.
Caring for someone living with dementia can be very demanding and have a significant impact on family and friends. From coping with feelings of guilt to grappling with a loved one not recognising you, it’s important that you look after yourself and find support where you can.
Remember that you’re not alone. Many Care UK care homes host dementia cafés that families and friends can attend to talk about their experiences and learn from others.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Our Dementia Help and Advice area is filled with tips from dementia experts within Care UK, including our latest guide, Let’s talk about dementia, which answers common questions about this often-misunderstood condition.
If you’re caring for a loved one with dementia at home, there are many organisations that provide practical day-to-day advice, useful information about the progression of dementia, or simply a listening ear.
Our Let’s talk about dementia guide is a good place to start, but we've listed further resources at the bottom of this page for more information on taking care of a loved one with dementia, as well as looking after yourself.
Making an effort to understand someone living with dementia is the first step towards supporting them. At Care UK, we treat all residents as individuals and get to know each person’s likes and dislikes – we call it person-centred care.
Read more about how to care for someone with dementia.
Dementia can make it more difficult to communicate with your loved one. Experts at Care UK have put together some helpful tips to ensure you can continue to have meaningful conversations and effective communication.
Simple dos and don'ts for communicating with someone living with dementia
Our survey of relatives found that 71% regretting not knowing more about how their loved one’s dementia could change their behaviours. It’s true that you can expect a number of changes in behaviour following a dementia diagnosis, but behaviours that challenge arise when the individual’s needs are going unmet.
By understanding more about the condition, you can take steps to meet your loved one’s needs and keep them calm and happy.
Right from the start, we focus on working in partnership with families to get to know each individual and understand their personal history. This begins with the option to develop a life story book even before a resident is admitted and continues with our monthly Resident of the Day programme, in which families and friends are invited to an in-depth review of care plans covering everything from medication to lifestyle and food choices.
Every resident is unique – so why should their care plan be any different? We pride ourselves in the high-quality tailored care we provide.Toby Sturgess, Home Manager
There are a number of care options available for those living with dementia, from care-at-home all the way to permanent residential dementia care or nursing dementia care for those with more advanced needs.
If you’re wondering whether long-term care is right for you, head to our Do I need care page to learn more.
If you are finding it difficult to communicate, first try to be open about what you’re struggling with - like people’s names or losing your train of thought - so that loved ones can be aware of how to help. You might find it helpful to tell others not to remind you that you’ve repeated yourself.
Avoid situations with background noise like a radio, and don’t be afraid to ask people to speak more slowly or repeat themselves.
Whether you are searching for care and support for yourself or a loved one, there is plenty of advice available for those looking for support.
Read our free guides for expert advice, or visit the websites below for further reading, forums and hotlines to help following a dementia diagnosis.
|Department of Health||The official website of the Department of Health providing information on latest policies, and development regarding all aspects of health and social care.||www.doh.gov.uk|
|Care Quality Commission||The CQC is the health and social care regulator for England. You can use this to find the most recent inspection reports for providers of healthcare.||www.cqc.org.uk|
|Scottish Care Inspectorate||The Care Inspectorate regulates and inspects care services in Scotland to make sure they meet the right standards.||careinspectorate.com|
|National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE)||NICE provides guidance on current best clinical practice||www.nice.org.uk|
|UK Online||UK Online provides government information and services||gov.uk|
|Government Carer Information||Government information specifically for carers.||nhs.uk/conditions/social-care-and-support-guide|
|Age UK||Age UK has been helping older people across the UK for more than 60 years.||ageuk.org.uk|
|Alzheimer's Society||For support, information, advice and local services for those looking after someone with dementia.||alzheimers.org.uk|
|Careaware||A public information and advisory service specialising in the issues relating to long term care.||careawareias.co.uk|
|Care Directions||The internet's unique guide to care and the rights of older people. Register for a free, regular e-newsletter.||bequests.co.uk/caredirections|
|Care Info||The website for the long term care sector.||careinfo.org|
|Centre for Policy on Ageing||An independent organisation promoting social policies that allow older people to achieve the full potential of their later years.||cpa.org.uk|
|Action on Elder Abuse||Action on Elder Abuse aims to prevent the abuse of older people||wearehourglass.org|
|Guide to Care||Guide to Care is a resource for carers of elderly people.||guide2care.com|
|Carers UK||Offers advice on benefits and services available to carers.||carersuk.org|
|The Care Workers Charity||Supports the basic welfare of current, former, and retired care workers by awarding hardship grants.||thecareworkerscharity.org.uk|
|SOLLA||SOLLA helps people and their families in finding trusted accredited financial advisers who understand financial needs in later life. A well-qualified financial adviser who is also somebody who understands the plans you need to make for your retirement years.||societyoflaterlifeadvisers.co.uk|
Explore more tips about caring for a loved one with dementia in our help and advice articles.Read more
Dementia expert Dr Nori Graham dispels myths, allays fears and offers practical guidance in a new guide to understanding dementia.
Person-centred care is all about putting residents’ needs, desires and choices at the heart of their care.