I am a carer for a close relative whose dementia and in particular short-term memory is a big cause for concern. She lives alone and is increasingly fragile, which has been made worse by lockdown and the isolation that this has caused for her.
Our recent visit to her GP and a subsequent telephone call with the social prescriber attached to the practice, prompted me to look for sources of advice and support from the Care Companion website. It was easy to register our details. I did this on her behalf because I am her main carer and her eyesight is so poor that she would find it difficult to navigate.
The website has different components and I was immediately drawn to the resources section. I found it useful that I could explore the diary and address book later. There is a Help section to guide carers through each section step by step and at their own pace. Initially, I was able to look on the coronavirus section specifically for care receivers and found sources of support for both of us via a telephone befriending service operated by Carers UK. Both the email and telephone numbers were readily accessible. She is suffering from loneliness and has found these regular telephone chats comforting. It has also given us new things to talk about and look forward to in the future when we will be able to go out again together.
I was able to find resources on Help at Home via the section for care givers within Care Companion. I have used this information to arrange some assistance a couple of times a week for me and my relative. The help gives her a chance to see and chat to somebody different while I can take a break. I am so relieved that this service is still operating during lockdown. While my relative was initially reluctant to get help because she felt that she didn’t need it, receiving the assistance made her smile and feel less anxious. It has also given me some much-needed space.
I have used my spare time to look at the Glossary section within Care Companion to understand a little more about the conditions that my relative lives with from a reliable and trusted source. As several carers have been involved in the design and content of Care Companion, I feel connected and reassured in a way that is very different from just performing an anonymous Google Search.
Take a look at Care Companion today – it is completely free and there is nothing to lose and much to gain!