"Life doesn’t end when dementia begins"
NHS Merton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is encouraging residents to support dementia awareness week this month and help spread the word that life doesn’t end when dementia begins.
Dementia awareness week is organised by the Alzheimer’s Society, who are this year encouraging supporters to ‘do something new’ to highlight that having dementia doesn’t mean you have to stop doing the things you love.
Dr Andrew Murray, a local GP and chair of NHS Merton CCG, said there are currently 850,000 people with dementia in the UK and that the number is steadily increasing1.
“There is currently no cure for dementia and it can happen to anyone,” Dr Murray said.
“However, it is important to recognise that having dementia does not mean that you have to stop doing the things you love and trying new things. Dementia does make it harder to do certain things but many people with dementia have active, healthy lives and continue their hobbies even as the disease progresses.
“With the right knowledge and support it is possible for someone with dementia to get the very best out of life.”
Dementia awareness week runs between 17-23 May and the Alzheimer’s Society has put together a few ideas of different things people can try to do something new:
· Try out a new recipe – be ambitious and try something different to your usual cooking style
· Sign up for a language class - many places offer classes to help you learn a range of languages, or you can often find free online courses
· Find a new sport or exercise to try out for the first time - look for a class you have not done at the gym before, or get your friends out to play a group game in the park
· Make plans for that big trip you have always wanted to go on - you might not be quite ready to go yet, but choose a date and get things moving
· Get a new hairstyle (or colour) - many salons offer free or cut price cuts to help with training
· Visit somewhere you have never been before – either close to home or further afield
Residents in Merton are encouraged to share what they are doing on social media using the hashtags #DoSomethingNew and #DAW2015.
The word dementia describes a set of symptoms that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or language.
Dementia is caused when the brain is damaged by diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease or a series of strokes. Dementia is progressive, which means the symptoms will gradually get worse.
For details about the symptoms of dementia visit www.nhs.uk
If you have any concerns or are worried about your memory, please speak to your GP. For more information about dementia awareness week 2015 visit www.alzheimers.org.uk
May 15, 2015