A Practical Guide for Dementia

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Contents

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Treatment

Care, medicines and therapies

Care, medicines and therapies

Here we cover some of the treatments you may be offered or that you might hear about. What treatments are suitable for you will depend on many factors. These include what sort of dementia you have and how it is affecting you now, and whether you are already having treatment or medicines for other conditions alongside dementia. You should discuss your treatment options with your doctor; these will be reviewed as your dementia and any other conditions you have progress.

Dementia treatment will typically be a combination of:

  • Person-centred care - a way of providing all-round care that is tailored to you as an individual and which you can help to plan. Read about person-centred care at The Health Foundation.

  • Medication - drugs that ease or slow the progress of some symptoms. Read about medicines for dementia on the Patient website

  • Talking therapies - such as counselling or cognitive behavioural therapy to help with emotional and psychological issues. Find out about talking therapies at NHS Choices

There are also 'alternative' therapies, such as aromatherapy. Though many of these have little or no scientific evidence as to whether they work, some people find they do help with certain symptoms, such as sleep problems. The Alzheimer's Society has information on alternative therapies.

Finally, there's self-care, which covers all the things you do in your daily life to stay well and look after yourself. The better you care for yourself, even if you need help with some things, the longer you're likely be independent, active and enjoying life.

Research

Research

Some people diagnosed with dementia feel they want to 'do something' about it. One way is to get involved in research - this might make you feel better, and in the longer term you may be helping others.

There's no shortage of opportunities: along with numerous research projects, in March 2017 the UK Clinical Trials Gateway listed more than 180 trials around dementia that were looking for people to take part.

There are numerous projects trying to improve dementia treatments or find ways to prevent or even cure the condition. The NHS National Institute for Health Research offers lots of ways for people with dementia to join in. It also has a resource page that lists online information sources and booklets that could help you decide if you want to be involved in research and in what ways.

Content on HealthUnlocked does not replace the relationship between you and doctors or other healthcare professionals nor the advice you receive from them.

Never delay seeking advice or dialling emergency services because of something that you have read on HealthUnlocked.