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Carol’s story: Living with Alzheimer’s disease (sensitive)

Watch Stuart, Carol and Dr Cath Mummery talk about life with Alzheimer's disease.
It’s almost like she’s living in a room which is getting smaller and smaller. Her world is contracting as she loses the confidence and the ability to go further afield. I’ll take you across the road in a bit, once we’ve had a chat. Oh, right. And then we’ll sort out your treatment as usual. All right. Oh, brilliant. Any issues with that? No. Happy? Very happy. Good. Anything that you need to raise with me at all, Stuart? Not really, no. I think, I mean obviously, we’ve noticed over the 12 months there’s been changes, but they’re slow and gentle.
But obviously coming here is good, because this is– I mean Carol’s been involved here nearly 25 years, so she knows the team. She’s worked here. This is always, this is always reassuring for her, because it’s familiar territory from the past. Well that’s really positive. Really positive. Well we like seeing you, too. So I supposed the biggest impact on her life is that she’s extremely vulnerable. I mean the good thing is there are a lot of good people out there, but there are people who could be quite exploitative, which is worrying for me as a carer and probably for many other carers.
So we have to set in place that people come and check on her in the day, just check in. We’ve got a wonderful care team who come in as though they’re friends and have a meal with her. She goes two days to a day centre. So she really has to have her day planned for her, she’s– it’s not possible for her to plan her own day. We also need to, sort of, constantly reassure her. And we need to monitor her.
She’s at the stage where she is, she’s still able to look after herself, but she’s struggling. Just checking she’s getting dressed properly. It’s actually been more about my life changing, because she’s always been omni-competent, always on top, always doing– she’s actually carried me. And now the thing is reversed, so it’s me that needs to check bedding’s changed, laundry’s done. It’s me that needs to check everything is in place, that she’s eaten. Check that tablets are taken. So it’s meant that my life has had to change a little bit in terms of that the focus has had to be Carol first, and then I get on and do my part.

Watch Stuart, Carol and Dr Cath Mummery talk about life with Alzheimer’s disease.

Stuart describes how Carol has lost confidence and needs help with many everyday tasks, and his life has also changed to support Carol.

How much of this relates to your own experiences of people with dementia?

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The Many Faces of Dementia

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