Dementia describes the broad collection of symptoms that are brought on by conditions affecting the brain. It is estimated to affect approximately five to eight per cent of people over the age of 65 and the number of cases doubles every 5 years for people aged over 65. For more information on the early signs of Dementia read What are the early signs of dementia?
The current state of care
It has been estimated that approximately 80% of care for aged people comes from family members and some 51% of Home Care Package recipients on higher levels of care are living with dementia. Caring for family with dementia can be particularly difficult and not always the best option for both the individual who has the condition and for the person providing the care. While it can provide a sense of fulfilment and joy, it can also bring negative consequences of guilt for not doing enough and financial and physical exhaustion due to the time involved in care.
What support is available for carers?
Importantly there is support available for both the individual and the carer. Applying for assistance as early as possible will ensure you receive the care you need at the right time.
For the carer, there are a whole range of services available including counselling, education and support groups. It’s an incredibly difficult job and there are many social and public groups and associations that can provide group and one-on-one care.
Dementia Australia runs a range of webinars for both carers and people living with dementia covering topics including
- Understanding what it means
- Effective communication
- Dealing with behavioural change
What can I do to access help
The first step is to check on eligibility for assistance. See How do I understand needs and care offerings for a family member?
Once the ACAT assessment has been completed, and you are determined as eligible for assistance, you will be advised of the service providers within your area. From here you can choose a provider to help with a range of services from personal care and hygiene to domestic help around the home.
The aim is to keep everyone at home for as long as they are safe and comfortable and the providers are there to ensure that is possible
If you would like more information about aged care, or access to services, you can contact our team of experts today on 1300 20 90 20.
For more information on aged care, you can download our handy checklist to help you feel prepared and confident.
Helping you get the right care
Our help is absolutely free and we will guide you through everything you need to know about accessing government-funded home care. Call us on 1300 20 90 20