Your health & local services

Dementia

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Dementia is a term which is used to describe a number of different symptoms or conditions that may include memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or language. It is caused when the brain is damaged by disease, most commonly Alzheimer's disease, or a series of strokes.

In Bristol there are an estimated 4,500 people living with the condition. Over the next 30 years, we expect that number to increase by a third.

Providing effective health and social care that enables people to live well with dementia is therefore a priority. To provide this care, we’re working closely with partners such as Bristol City Council, Alzheimer’s Society and the city’s hospital trusts.

Do you live in South Gloucestershire?

Find dementia support and services in South Gloucestershire.

Watch the audio-free version (with text)

Symptoms of dementia can include: 

  • memory loss, especially problems with memory of recent events
  • increasing difficulty with organising and planning tasks and activities 
  • becoming confused in unfamiliar environments
  • having difficulty finding the right words
  • finding difficulty with numbers
  • changes in personality and mood, and depression 

Find out more at NHS Choices

How to reduce your risk of getting dementia

Leading a healthy lifestyle can help reduce your risk of getting dementia. This includes stopping smoking, taking regular exercise, eating a well-balanced diet and keeping yourself mentally stimulated.

What to do if you suspect dementia

If you are worried that you, or someone close to you, has dementia, then the more quickly you seek help, the better.

Your GP can rule out other conditions with similar symptoms and give you further advice, information and support on dementia. They may offer medication if appropriate.

If your GP is unable to make a diagnosis, they may refer you to a memory clinic or arrange further tests.

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Local support for people with dementia

There is plenty of help and support available across the city:

Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service

Dementia care in the city is provided by the Dementia Wellbeing Service. The service is delivered by Alzheimer’s Society and Devon Partnership NHS Trust working together as the Bristol Dementia Partnership.
People living with dementia will be referred to the Dementia Wellbeing Service through their GP.

The Dementia Wellbeing Service has been designed to provide a personalised package of care, tailored to the individual. It includes continuous, one-to-one support local to where someone lives and the creation of a personalised wellbeing plan. This will provide long term support from assessment and diagnosis until the end of their life, including extensive support for those with the most complex and challenging needs. Families and carers will also benefit from practical help, training and advice.

Dementia Wellbeing Service

Alzheimer’s Society

Alzheimer’s Society provides information on Alzheimer’s disease and links to local dementia support groups.

Find out more at the Alzheimer’s Society website or look at their local support group section to find support groups and activities in the Bristol area.

For more information call 0117 961 0693 (Bristol office) or the national helpline on 0300 222 1122 (local rate call).

Alzheimer’s Society

Bristol’s memory cafés

Alzheimer’s Society runs monthly memory cafés at venues across the city for anyone who has dementia or memory problems. Specialist health professionals offer help and advice and you can meet other families and carers experiencing dementia.

There are memory cafes in:

Support for carers 

For information on carer’s support and how to arrange a carer’s assessment, go to Bristol City Council (Carers) or call Care Direct on 0117 922 2700.

Bristol City Council (Carers)

Other organisations providing support are:

A short documentary about living with dementia

A powerful and moving account made by students at UWE Bristol about living with dementia.

Other useful links

Improvements in care for people with dementia

Improving health and social care for people with dementia is a priority for us. Together with Bristol City Council, the Alzheimer’s Society and our hospital trusts – amongst others – we are committed to helping people live well with the disease and to supporting their families and carers.

Cover for Bristol Dementia Strategy 2011-2015

Bristol Dementia Strategy 2011-2015

The purpose of this strategy is to set out the vision for future services for people with dementia and their carers in Bristol, based on an analysis of current and future needs, as well as what people with dementia and ...

See also

Carers
Mental health