“Just keep going”: Living alone with dementia and without informal support

“When you go to a service they assume that there is input from families in the background.”

For Dementia Action Week, we shine a light on the experiences of an often forgotten group.

People can and do live alone successfully with dementia and without family and friends nearby.

As Michael explains “we’re still the same person.” In a series of videos, he and Wayne talk about how they navigate life with dementia without day-to-day support.

They have been part of the Living Alone with Dementia project. Through interviews, audit and case studies, the research project identified barriers to living alone and then developed guidance with people living with dementia about how best to support people in this situation.

The guidance for commissioners, providers, practitioners and the general public raises awareness and sets out how they can provide what Michael calls “a bit of back-up.”

Now the project has created videos to highlight the importance of recognising this group of people.

Alongside the videos by Wayne and Michael, Tim – a commissioner – highlights the growing number of people living alone and the need to adjust services to include them; Karen emphasises how the guidance can help practitioners work with people to avoid crises; and Zoe flags how the guidance can support providers to tailor their services.

For this Dementia Action Week, how about making your action: to remember that people are living alone with dementia in your community, and to support them to keep doing this successfully.

In his video, Wayne sums it up: “it’s maintaining your independence, you know, that has to be the aim of everything really.”

Image from the Centre for Ageing Better’s Age-positive Image Library


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