Learning to care for dementia sufferers

Aoife McMaster, a dementia support worker for the Alzheimer Societ. INLT 02-650-CON
Aoife McMaster, a dementia support worker for the Alzheimer Societ. INLT 02-650-CON

Dementia carers in East Antrim are being offered the chance to learn more about the disease and how it affects the individual in a series of courses being run by Alzheimer’s Society in the Northern Trust area.

The courses aim to help carers understand more about the condition and its symptoms, including the type of behaviours that people may display which can at times be challenging.

By understanding more about dementia, the courses help people to cope better with caring for the individual.

Alzheimer’s Society dementia support worker, Aoife McMaster, said: “Relatives of people with dementia often say that it can be really frustrating when someone doesn’t want to change their clothes, have a shower or sleep at night, especially if the person doesn’t accept that there is anything wrong with them.

“Understanding how the person is trying to make sense of the world, and how they feel about the losses they are experiencing, can help relatives to be more patient and cope better. This, in turn, helps the person with dementia to be more content.

“The courses will also help people to better understand the changes that occur as dementia progresses and there will be the opportunity for carers to discuss the difficulties they face and what tactics work for them.”

A carer who attended one of the new workshops, recently, said: “It has completely changed the way I think about my dad and his behaviour. I’ve passed on lots of tips to the rest of my family and so it’s had a big impact on us.”

For more information, contact the Aoife McMaster on 078602 58728 to find out more and to book a place on the next programme in your local area.