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It’s not uncommon to feel helpless when someone you love is suffering from dementia and seems to be drifting away into their own world.

That world is often a confusing and frightening one, where relating to people, objects and places of meaning becomes more and more difficult. Once dementia has taken hold, it can completely change how a person interprets what they see, hear, taste, feel and smell.

Creating a memory box is one way you can help a friend or family member to recall those memories and the treatment is now becoming an essential part of dementia care in the UK.

Why should I create a memory box?

This is a simple activity that uses reminiscence therapy to encourage short-term memories by stimulating long-term ones. Sitting down and exploring a collection of items or images can prompt a dementia sufferer into remembering specific people and events from their past.

These memory boxes have proven to be extremely useful for helping dementia patients living in care homes as the objects can establish a valuable landmark and open up the lines of communication between carers, residents and their families....
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The lone yogi, sat atop a quiet hill as the sun rises, is a powerful image and one that springs to mind for most people when they think about yoga. The focus of yoga is on the individual’s own practise, and the effects it has on their body and mind. Although the relationship of guru and student is well established it’s still seen as very much a solo gig. However there are more and more classes now that focus on yoga for couples, and they can have real benefits.

Partner yoga classes work through a series of asanas (poses) that require two people to move in unison to achieve the pose. Because of this a yoga for couples class can help bring a couple closer together and begin to develop more trust and a deeper connection. These are the main benefits of yoga for couples...
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Loneliness Part 2

Credit to Kathryn from the forum for this wonderful blog series

There are numerous reasons why people find themselves alone and this doesn’t necessarily mean they are lonely. But in the coming weeks I hope to show you how people can become alone and end up lonely. In this installment I am dealing with a subject close to home as the member I interviewed has battled agoraphobia too but alot more besides as you will see. Let’s hear her story in her own words…..
Could you tell us what your health problems are ?

I suffer with post concussion syndrome following a fall in the bathroom, Myalgic Encephalopathy aka ME, agoraphobia, as well as having mass allergies and psoriasis.

How do these affect your day to day life ?

They can stop me walking or putting a pair of socks on with psoriasis.

My post concussion syndrome can make sitting in noise unbearable or being out in it to not being able to put the fan on in the kitchen because of sensitivity to sound, difficulty going out in the sun because of sensitivity to light and day to day concentration can be really bad....
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According to a new report in The Telegraph, Britain has over a million people out of work due to mental health problems. This is more than any other country in the developed world and is costing the UK economy £70 billion every year. It is estimated that one in four people will experience some kind of mental health problem in their lifetime, with anxiety and depression being the most common disorder.

With these frightening figures in mind, how much do you really know and understand about mental health? Would you be able to recognise those warning signs in a friend or family member? Mental Health First Aid training can help you.

Understanding Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)

Established in Australia in 2000 and now internationally recognised around the world, Mental Health First Aid is an educational course that teaches individuals how to identify, understand and help a person who may be developing a mental health problem. The course gives people the skills to provide initial care in the early stages of mental health issues, and point them in the right direction of professional help. It covers everything from anxiety and depression to suicide and psychosis and at the end of the course, participants receive a certificate and a fully licensed Mental Health First Aid Manual....
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The old adage ‘if it’s not hard-work, it’s not worth doing’ passes the test of time and rings as true now as when it was first said. Here is our run down of five things that might require a little effort, but are so worth the pain.

Quit smoking
Stopping smoking is so hard because it’s not only addictive, but it’s also engrained into routine and habit. Many smokers say that there are certain ‘pressure points’ when they feel more inclined to reach for the fag packet. Keep a ‘craving-journal’ to figure out when your willpower is weakest. The positive news is that regardless of age, smokers can significantly reduce the risk of disease, including cancer, by quitting. Many people are opting for e-cigarettes to help them quit effectively. Available online from Eshishin, e-cigs don’t create ash or a smoky smell, giving you a nicotine hit without the harmful chemicals associated with tobacco.

Eat healthily
The eat well plate is a useful online tool developed by the NHS to help everyone get to grips with the different food groups and how much of each to include in your diet. A main thing to consider is how you can incorporate at least five portions of fresh fruit and vegetables into your daily diet. You should also opt for wholegrain varieties when it comes to bread, rice and pasta, and eat potatoes with their skins on for added fibre. Make sure you’re eating protein with each meal and, most important of all, limit the amount of food and drink you consume that are high in fat or sugar. To really nail a long-lasting change, a healthy diet needs to be treated as a central part of your life not as a passing fad......

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We all get old and as we do we start to get less mobile. Steps and slippery surfaces become harder to navigate and the consequences of a fall become more serious. To maintain a good quality of life it is important to still be able to safely leave our homes and enjoy our gardens. Deckbuilders Ltd have put together this helpful guide which takes you through what you need to consider to make your garden more accessible.

Our gardens are full of scents, sounds, memories and beauty which we should be able to enjoy every day of our lives no matter how much we struggle with mobility. Being able to plant, weed, tend flowers and grow vegetables maintains fitness as well as providing an important mental boost for people who may becoming increasingly isolated....

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Have them in circles
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Any owner of a mobility scooter, wheelchair or even a simple walking stick will understand the need for good quality spare parts and accessories and how the failure of a simple component can be a major inconvenience.

So what can you do to prevent the downtime that comes from a part failure? Where do you start to look and what is available?

Firstly, there are many ways to prevent parts wearing out or breaking in the first place. As with any vehicle or piece of equipment, it is always advisable to carry out routine checks to notice if anything looks out of place or is showing the effects of wear and tear. For example, on a scooter, it would be as simple as looking at the tyres, seeing if there is sufficient tread, or if there is any damage to the tyres.

On a scooter, it is true to say that tyres and batteries are some of the most replaced items, yet finding replacement tyres is a relatively easy task by making a search on the internet. A visual look-over can detect damage or wear to other components that can then be noted to be mention to your regular service agent, or for yourself, if you carry out your own basic repairs and maintenance....
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“It was strange how loud the world was when you weren’t filling it up with your own noise.” These words appear in Bridget Asher’s novel “The Provence Cure for the Brokenhearted” and can certainly be said to be true for modern life. From a work environment where concentration is vital, to a child struggling to complete their homework; the invasion of unwanted, and often repetitive, noise, too easily becomes much more than simply a distraction.

You might try to tackle the problem at source by gaining co-operation from the noise-makers. In a business environment this might simply not be possible. Elsewhere, other people may not be prepared to be “reasonable” to the degree you request! In either case, and to gain the long-term outcome you need, there is a practical option. Before we examine this, let’s take a closer look at a few aspects of the problem.

Noise and the modern world

Noise is a continuing, many feel increasing, problem in the world today. In fact, not only is there now an International Noise Awareness Day, to be held next on April 30th 2014 – this will, in fact, be the 19th such event. Created by the Center for Hearing and Communication, this aims to raise awareness of the dangers of long-term noise exposure....
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Watching someone we care for suffer from growing disabilities is hard to watch. It is even harder on the person it affects. But increasing disabilities are an expected result of aging or advancing disease. Instead of accepting the increasing disabilities as inevitable, family, friends, and caregivers can help to keep the individual focused on what they can do instead of what they can no longer do.

Caregivers often think that their efforts are primarily focused on the physical needs of the individual, such as helping them with moving, cleaning themselves, or eating. However, they often overlook the importance of the emotional support they provide. This is every bit as important to an individual as taking care of their physical needs. This is especially true when their disabilities are increasing.....
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When the winter chill begins, it is time to cosy up at home and stay nice and warm for as long as possible. Dark nights and rainy days don’t help keep us feeling positive but there are a few tips to follow if you want your winter weeks to be as sunny as possible. From making sure your radiators keep on going while you need them, to keeping the family entertained on wet and cold weekends, this guide will see you through until spring arrives.

Stay Warm
Proper insulation is important if you want a toasty warm house as well as affordable heating bills. Both loft and cavity wall insulation can ensure your home keeps the heat in better and can even help to reduce your heating bills. Shop around for a good deal before you buy and you can even check out the latest Government backed schemes to see if you are eligible for a discount or to help with your home’s insulation.

Stay Prepared
The winter brings its fair share of troubles; from frozen pipes and icy roads, to boiler breakdowns and leaky roofs. It is always best to be prepared when it comes to making life easier during winter, so start your preparations during summer and autumn by gritting paths, servicing your boiler and insulating exposed pipes....
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Credit to Kathryn from the forum for this wonderful blog series

As some of you will know by now my Mum passed away last September. It was a peaceful end to a long and loving life. She died in the care home where she had been living since January. The staff couldn’t have been kinder or more supportive of my brother who was with her all that last day and for that I will always be indebted to them. I felt I couldn’t be there and maybe that was better for her too as she no longer knew who I was and so my presence may have proved too upsetting.

Of course her room had to be cleared out ready for the next resident but here, at home, her things are still untouched as I don’t feel able to part with them just now. There seems to be an indecent haste sometimes to remove all trace of the loved one after death. I find it difficult to even contemplate giving away her things though I know she would approve as we gave most of my Dad’s things to charity to help others after death as he always had in life. One day I will feel better about this and get on with it but I’m not rushing....
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Community for Physical, Mental, Cognitive, Developmental, Sensory & Emotional Disabilities.
Introduction
Disability Sanctuary is a dedicated Online community for people with Physical, Mental, Cognitive, Developmental, Emotional & Sensory Disabilities. Find and add Disability related events, find and ask questions, offer advice & information about health, work, benefits & Disability insurance issue's. Benefits include: Chat Forums, Media Threads, Current Affairs, Competitions, User Alerts, Newsfeeds, Like Posts System, Recipes & much more....