These inventions to help people with dementia, are ideal for patients or carers. Dementia is a whole range of diseases that includes Alzheimer’s, which can take years to manifest and often results in death. The main symptom is forgetfulness, but this can turn really worrying, with patients wandering off at any given time, without supervision.
At present, dementia is not curable (some believe it has the same causes as heart disease, with plaque developing on the brain). Others consider aluminium to be a cause, as this has been found in brains of deceased patients (GreenPan ceramic cookware is better but no cookware is safe near birds if you live with them, no matter what the company says. Pet Coach has a good post on the many dangers to birds including cookware & hairdryers).
To find a cure, donate to humane medical research charities (that don’t use innocent animals). The main Alzheimer’s charities use animal testing that is outdated, ineffective and cruel (usually involving monkeys). Modern research methods would likely have found a cure by now, if they had the same funding from the public and government, that the major charities do. For now, here are some inventions to make life easier. Most are available on the NHS, you just have to ask.
- Pattison’s Jelly Drops are vegan fruit sweets that are easy to pick up, in recyclable packaging. Invented by a relative of a demenetia patient who was getting dehydrated due to forgetting to drink, these are made of 95% water and electrolytes, for further hydration. They have no laxative effect.
- Eatwell is a set of tableware from an industrial designer who created it for her grandmother. As well as the items having high rims etc to stop spilling, they are also in bright colours to encourage appetite.
- Music is often the ‘last thing to go’ for a dementia patient. Donate unused iPods to Music & Memory, and these are given to patients.
- Timeless is an app to help make a patient’s life easier. Used by the caregiver, the app takes photos to let the patient know who is talking on the phone, and also reminds them of daily functions like eating, drinking and washing. Designed to help her grandma, this was invented by a 15-year old!
- SafeWander was invented by the grandson of a patient, and attaches to the clothes (like socks) to sound and alarm, if someone wanders off. This enables carers to sleep, knowing they will be alerted in an emergency. It does have mixed reviews.
Free & Low-Cost Help for Carers
- Caring for a patient with dementia can be very stressful and tiring, due to difficulty in communicating and the constant risk of them going off. See find free & low-cost help for carers.
- Visit Turn 2 Us to ensure you are getting all the benefits you are entitled to. Helping Hands at Home is a care agency that offers visiting care nationwide. A Helping Hands carer can help with safely moving around the home, personal care, household chores, running errands and caring for pets.
- Cinnamon Trust and PAPAS also have dog walking volunteers that can also care for other pets, take pets to the vets and often foster or volunteer pets, if you or someone you love goes into hospital). The former also lists pet-friendly nursing homes, and can arrange adoption, if the patient dies.
Donate Unwanted iPods to help Dementia Patients
Donate unwanted iPods to help dementia patients. Music is often the last connection with the outside world, for those who suffer from Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related illness. By donating unwanted iPods that are just clogging up your drawers, you can clear some clutter, and give someone a new lease of life, so that they can enjoy good music from their past, using modern technology.
Chiltern Music Therapy has also developed the first iPod Pharmacy. This initiative takes unwanted MP3 players, and cleans them up, before loading with tailored music to help stimulate, soothe & engage patients. This enables to take someone’s mind off their treatment, pain or environment, allowing themselves to get lost in favourite music.
Music is a therapy. it is a communication far more powerful than words, far more immediate, far more efficient. Yehudi Menuhin