Helping a loved one
Dementia Awareness Week May 16 - 22 Help is on hand to support you and your family
Supporting someone with dementia can be a steep and emotional learning curve for many loved-ones and carers.
That’s why Buckinghamshire talking therapy service Healthy Minds offers a course of practical and emotional support for people who are caring for people with dementia.
The structured group runs over 12 weeks offering cognitive behavioural therapy and invaluable peer support to people caring for people with dementia. It is currently online however plans are underway to reintroduce face-to-face sessions in the near future in line with covid guidance.
Buckinghamshire clinical psychologist Dr Samantha Wood said: “As a clinician it’s an absolute privilege to work with this group of people, and I find that the group offers a chance for carers to learn valuable skills, connect with others in similar situations, and feel less alone in their caring role.
“This is a well-established group that has been running for many years within Oxford Health. Carers regularly provide positive feedback and tell us they feel less alone after taking part. They also often note improvements in their relationship with their relative and feel better able to continue supporting their relative.
“It’s lovely to see many members of the groups share contact details with each other so that they can continue to support each other informally after the group has finished.
“I would encourage people to sign themselves up and would be happy to speak to anyone wanting more information about the group.”
Discussions include practical steps to care for loved ones including overcoming the emotional challenges experienced by people with dementia and those who care for them.
Samantha said: “We cover topics including managing the stress of their caring role and coping with difficult thoughts and emotions. That’s alongside ideas to help carers provide care for their relative for as long as possible and understanding more about different types of dementia and how these will impact their relative over time. We also look to identify helpful ways carers can learn to interact with their relative to reduce their feelings of stress, distress or depression and help them develop ways of responding when their relative is distressed and helping them cope with any behaviour they find most difficult.”
If you would like to find out more about the carers support sessions you can contact Healthy Minds directly by:
- Completing an online referral at www.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/healthyminds/
- Calling the main admin team on 01865 901600
- Texting “Talk” and your name to 07798 667169
Published: 16 May 2022