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Blogger Babies and Mummy believe in sharing resources and ideas to enable the best possible care and support of our vulnerable.

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Monday, 7 August 2017

Lady Bader

Lady Joan Bader was the widow of Battle of Britain flying hero Sir Douglas Bader.

She was a former Red Cross nurse who worked during World War Two and who later gave much of her time to charities, including Guide Dogs for the Blind and Riding for the Disabled and was awarded an OBE for services to disabled people.

In 1982 Lady Bader established the Bader Foundation to encourage other people who had lost their limbs to rebuild their lives.

Lady Bader's Legacy is of a very special significance, because of the relevance to her own journey through various unsuitable care home systems towards the end of her life.

Had she been able to have the opportunity for your companionship and a caring listening ear, she would not have been so lonely or so bored, and would have had
someone outside of her family to turn to for trust and for confidence and understanding when she had her feelings of sadness and being isolated within care.

This also stand true now for so many of the Veterans still in the care systems, and why more of our current military personnel are needed to volunteer their dedication to the needs for our former servicemen and women.

Research shows that loneliness can contribute to serious mental and physical health problems, which require costly health and social care interventions.

Studies on interventions that reduce loneliness has found that they result in:
·         Lower use of medication,
·         Fewer GP visits,
·         Lower incidence of falls
·         Reduced risk factors for long term care
·         Fewer days in hospital, physician visits and outpatient appointments
·         Fewer admissions to nursing homes and later admission

With the detrimental impact of loneliness on health The Lady Bader Ambassadors is a vital resource for understanding the picture of loneliness and service provision aimed at commissioners, service providers, clinical commissioning groups, public health teams and anyone interested in addressing loneliness in their community.

We are asking today, to support the Prevention of Loneliness Campaign by providing much needed funds.
lady bader
Lady Bader, 17 March 1918 – 18 December 2015


Sunday, 30 July 2017

Mild Cognitive Impairment is not Dementia

In today’s “market” dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is addressed in most healthcare budgets and their subsequent conversations.  But there is another which warrant discussion – Mild Cognitive Impairment (or MCI as it is abbreviated). 

How does MCI fit into the healthcare system and budget?

What do we need to know about it?

For years Dementia and Alzheimer’s has been the most common form of dementia and nearly everyone has heard of them but so little is known or discussed about MCI.

What is Dementia?
Today, we need to take a step back and review the definition of dementia to understand where mild cognitive impairment fits in. Dementia is thought to be a syndrome or group of symptoms that show impairments in areas such as cognitive skills (memory, speech, thinking), functional abilities (daily activities such as dressing, eating, walking) and in mood and behavior.

In the simplest terms, dementia is caused by brain cells in key areas dying off.

Some researchers actually feel that there are over 70 different types of dementia.

The reason we hear Alzheimer's disease and the term dementia often used interchangeably is because Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia.

Some of the common symptoms of dementia are:
·         Language problems
·         Judgment and abstract thinking issues
·         Personality or behaviour changes
·         Memory loss or impairment
·         Disorientation to time or place

Dementia is a progressive disease that interferes with daily activities and quality of life.

Often the disruption to one area of an individual's life is what brings the disease to the forefront. At this time, there is no cure but medications are on the market that claims to stop some of the further development of the disease.

Research continues but there is much that is unknown about dementia.

What Is Mild Cognitive Impairment?
Mild cognitive impairment is not dementia. It is defined as a noted problem with cognition or brain processing that is unusual for a person's age or education.

If you recall from the dementia definition, there were issues seen in a number of areas of brain functioning--with MCI, it is only cognitive functioning that is impaired.

The other major difference between MCI and dementia is that any of the symptoms that are seen in mild cognitive impairment do not cause any interference with the person's daily level of activities. We know that once dementia symptoms have been seen, there are quality of life disruptions already in place.

MCI matches dementia in the fact that the cause of the syndrome is also unknown yet the medical community feels that it could be triggered by stress or illness.

Some physicians and researchers feel that MCI can be viewed as a defining line between regular aging and dementia.

In fact, some studies point to the fact that approximately 10-15 percent of all MCI cases seem to develop into some form of dementia.

Knowing the relationship that could link mild cognitive impairment with dementia makes this an important topic to follow in the future.

If you suspect that you or a loved one has some cognitive concerns that are more than just the usual forgetfulness we all experience, take the time to have it checked out.

New Diagnosis of MCI – A personal journey

Being new to the diagnosis of MCI for yourself or a loved can be difficult, difficult to accept.

As you learn more about this condition, try to keep an open mind and remember that you are not alone.

I would encourage anyone to speak with other people who have similar experiences and/or conditions as their support and guidance can be invaluable.  There are many organisations across the UK and the wider community set up to offer information and support but personally I’ve found those set up by people living with the condition far more useful.

Reaching out for support can make a huge difference.

In my article Resources for Older People & Their Caregivers I touched upon some of the organisation that can help and these operate both locally and nationally.  Most offer support groups, advice lines and free services to help those with MCI, Dementia and/or Alzheimer’s.

In addition, look out for:

·         Support groups and counselling services: Support groups for those with memory loss can be primarily discussion-oriented or can offer a variety of creative activities including planned outings. Caregiver support groups and education programs are also available in the community for family members or friends who are assisting you.

·         Volunteer programs: Volunteer opportunities for persons with MCI are available in some areas. You may enjoy the chance to contribute your time and talent to your community.

·         Artistic programs: Expressing yourself through drawing, painting, clay, or photography, for example, can be beneficial and provide you wonderful opportunities for self-expression.

·         Structured day programs: Adult day programs include activities such as art, music, gardening, exercise, discussion groups, field trips, and assistance with physical health needs.

·         Professional assistance: Take advantage of professionals who assist with maintaining your physical strength and coordination, such as personal trainers, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. And local Cleaning services can also help with household chores and errands.

·         Legal and financial assistance: Again, drawing up a Power of Attorney for Finances are essential first steps. Care management: A care manager experienced in the field of dementia can provide education, assistance with transitions, emotional support, and guidance in locating and coordinating community resources.