A Discussion with Bluebird Care Richmond and Twickenham’s Dementia Expert

Published: 20/05/2021

It's Dementia Action Week, a time to highlight the importance of how dementia can disrupt someone's day-to-day life.

It's essential for others around someone living with dementia to understand how to communicate and care for their loved ones. Carer and Dementia Friend Aleksandra provides us with an insight on the best care practice.

A Carer for almost 11 years, Aleksandra joined Bluebird Care Richmond & Twickenham in 2012. Educated to a high level in Social Work and receiving both bachelor's and master's degrees in the subject, Aleksandra also underwent extensive care training, including dementia training for her role. 

Aleksandra said: "Working with people living with dementia can be challenging and difficult, but it is also rewarding. My role as a carer has helped me to become a better person; gaining patience, empathy, sensitivity, adaptability, and easiness making contact with other people."

Aleksandra discusses the benefits of people receiving care in their own homes, she added: "Staying at home can help to maintain their independence for as long as possible. Being involved in a daily routine will enable them to feel safe and calm, overall, improving their mental wellbeing."

As the dementia stages progress, caring for a loved one can get challenging and emotionally straining. People with dementia can often experience a disturbance related to their emotions, thoughts, memory loss, or judgment about themselves. They can appear angry, fearful of being not understood.

What can you do to help ease their irritability and stress? Aleksandra discusses the importance of practicing mental and physical exercises: "I participate in a variety of activities to keep my customers engaged. I engage in deep discussions about their past to re-ignite forgotten memories, take a look at photos, talk about their family and friends. These sensory activities help them to reminisce and ultimately bring more pleasure to their life.

"My top tips would be to always speak in a clear and calm manner. Try and use simple words and short expressions and give time to respond. Keep eye contact throughout the conversation or hold their hand to show your support."

If you are interested in finding more about providing care for your loved one, please call Bluebird Care Richmond and Twickenham’s friendly team on 020 4538 3413.