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What is 1:1 Dementia Care?

I was told recently that our 1:1 dementia care was outstanding and unique. So I thought I’d share what we do, how we do it and what makes us so different.

Holding your hand through the journey

Introduction

I set up Dementia Doulas with a vision of creating a 1 to 1 care service to fill the huge void between personal care visits and 24 hour care. The idea was to set up a team of Dementia Doulas (R) each one supporting a family in the way a child’s nanny does. I had the phrase ‘Granny Nanny’ in my head and have kept this as my model ever since. Dementia is such a cruel disease and it is usually very hard for a family to provide the level of care they want to.

Very often the main carer is an elderly husband or wife. The demands of someone with Dementia are pretty constant and sometimes physically exhausting. This means that their own needs: physically, medically, socially and psychologically – get neglected. If there isn’t a husband or wife, the care then goes onto the shoulders of one relative or shared between a few. It is very hard in this day and age with the need for everyone to be earning and running households for this to be seamless and without huge pressures on everyone involved.

This is where Dementia Doulas come in with their 1:1 care. One Doulas gets assigned to one family and slots in around the needs and wants of the client and the family. Sharing the caring is our motto. The idea its that we take the weight off the family’s shoulders so everyone can stay fit, healthy and mentally strong despite the Dementia.

Example of 1:1 Dementia Care.

Sharing the Caring

1:1 Dementia Care means building up relationships slowly. We fit a Doula to a family who has similar interests and values. Usually we start slowly…..maybe a couple of 3 hour visits a week. This allows the family carers a short break from being ‘on duty’ and prevents the client from feeling overwhelmed. As time goes on, the relationship builds and the dementia worsens we increase our hours to match the family’s needs.

A trip out to Gloucester Docks.

We want you to be able to stay together in your own home for as long as possible. We will do everything in our power to make that happen if you wish.

We want the whole family to live their best lives possible while living with this disease and staying at home.

So What Does 1:1 Dementia Care Look Like?

1:1 Care means we can do the following for our clients:

  • Cook you what you want, when you want it
    • tastes and preferences can be so individual and eating can become a bug issue. We make little and often tasty treats if that is what you want
  • Take you to your favourite pub
    • We have all been stuck at home for so long, and friendship and social lives are so important
We allow you to be you, no judgement
  • Go for a walk or a swim with you
    • Exercise is so good to keep the blood flowing to the brain, plus physical exercise during the day can help alleviate ‘Sundowning”
  • Pamper you with hand and foot treatments
    • We belong to Namaste Care which encourages interaction through touch and gentle massage
  • Play card games
    • Any games you can still play keeps your mind active
  • Help you with your hobbies
    • We all love craft activities as well as bird watching, gardening, etc
  • Find you some Dementia Friendly groups
    • We love going to Singing for The Brain, Memory Cafes, Muscle Memory table tennis sessions etc
  • Make and accompany you to appointments
    • Doctors, hospital, foot clinic, eye tests, blood tests
  • Help you listen to your favourite music or shows
    • Music from your ‘heyday’ will always lift spirits and jog memories. We can use Spotify, Youtube as well as source CDs and DVDs for you
  • Drive you to your friends
    • Now we can meet friends and family indoors again you can start visiting family and friends. We can stay with you, or leave you to it
  • Plan your shopping/menus around your taste
    • Who knows what you might fancy and how your tastes might change? We can help you shop as well as make some suggestions
  • Help you with the garden
    • If you are fit enough we can garden alongside you to keep you on track and motivated, or we can tidy up the garden for you
  • Help with housework
    • We are happy to help you keep the house neat and tidy
  • Take you on a great day out
    • Wherever you want to go…..
  • We will even accompany you on holiday!
Accompanying a client to Italy for 2 weeks

What is 1:1 Dementia Care? ….. it is whatever it takes to keep your loved one happy at home, while you have a life alongside caring.

Find out more here: https://dementiadoulas.uk

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