If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with dementia you’ll find some useful information on the Independent Age website (see the link below).
We have also put a link to the ‘Living with Dementia’ factsheet.
We have a number of useful leaflets at the Surgery that relate to both Dementia and Age Related issues.
Many of us know of someone who suffers from Dementia and see at first hand the effect on the sufferer’s nearest and dearest. However it’s not all doom and gloom, as we can help ourselves and decrease the risk of developing some forms of dementia, see below.
Just as we have found lifestyle changes can reduce the risk of cancer; we now find it possible to reduce the risk of some forms of dementia. NICE (the National Institute for Health & Care Excellence) say:
“… the risk of developing vascular dementia or mixed dementia can be reduced, or the onset or progression delayed, through lifestyle changes. After Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia is the most common type of dementia, accounting for up to 130,000 cases. Vascular disease can be prevented, and so reductions in the number of people with vascular and mixed dementias may be expected to follow if risk factors are addressed.
These are the risk factors in mid-life
- Not being physically active
- Alcohol consumption
- An unhealthy diet
- Being overweight
What causes vascular dementia? A reduced blood supply to the brain caused by diseased blood vessels. This can cause problems with memory, thinking and reasoning. Together, these 3 elements are known as cognition. When cognitive problems are bad enough to have a significant impact on daily life, this is known as vascular dementia. Mixed dementia is a combination of Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia.
Reduce your risk – Book a ‘Stop Smoking’ appointment with Jessica or Trudy our Practice Nurses, here at the Practice, they are fully trained to support you to give up smoking. Ask to see them! Evening appointments are available on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
The Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends programme is raising awareness of dementia in the wider population, with 3 million dementia friends. Health Education England is providing training in dementia to health and social care staff involved in the care of people who may have dementia. Look for local Dementia Friends training courses to become a ‘Dementia Friend’ yourself.
The Herbert Protocol
There is nothing more frightening than when a loved one, friend or neighbour fails to return when they should. For people living with dementia, this can be quite common – the Herbert Protocol could give you peace of mind.
It is a national scheme introduced by the police, in partnership with other agencies, which encourages carers to compile useful information which could be used in the event of a vulnerable person going missing.
Carers, family members and friends can complete a form in readiness which gives vital details, such as medication required, mobile numbers, places previously located. A recent photograph of the person should also be kept with it. It is not intended to replace existing safeguarding and security measures.
In the event of your family member or friend going missing, the form can be easily handed to the police to reduce the time taken in gathering this information.
The Herbert Protocol initiative is named after George Herbert, a war veteran of the Normandy landings, who lived with dementia. George Herbert died whilst ‘missing’, trying to find his childhood home.
Who decides who is at risk?
The judgement should be based on your professional opinion or knowledge of your family member.
Who completes the form?
In a care setting, the care provider, the person at risk or their family can fill in the form. Please seek permission from the person at risk or their next of kin. If neither is possible, the care provider should make a ‘best interests’ assessment. The form should be completed and regularly updated, so that all the information is as relevant as possible.
When should the form be sent to the police?
The police only need the form at the point the person is reported missing. There is no need to hand it to police before then and the form will be returned once the person is found.
Where should the form be stored?
It should be stored securely in the care setting, in accordance with data protection laws, but where you can find it quickly. Please make sure other relatives, carers or staff know where it is, and that the person it refers to is part of the Herbert Protocol. Suggestion: If you use one of the Lion’s pots which contain emergency medical information, put your form and photo with it. You can obtain a Lion Pot from the surgery.
Printed or electronic form?
You can download the form from the website. A paper copy will need to be handed to the police officer who attends to take the missing person’s report.
What should a care provider do if the person goes missing?
After you have conducted an ‘open door’ search of the address, grounds and outbuildings and you believe a person is missing, alert the police at the earliest opportunity. If you believe that the person missing is at a high risk of harm, please call 999. Tell the police operator that you have the Herbert Protocol person profile.