Overcoming the Stigma of Dementia and Isolation of Caregiving
Caring for someone living with dementia can have moments when it feels like you are doing it all on your own. At Bella Groves, we understand this feeling. Our team is made up of real people who have been personally impacted by dementia. We understand you, and we are here for you every step of the way.
The most important thing we want you to know as you navigate the dementia care journey is that you don’t have to do it on your own. We are here, and we are working to change the conversation that surrounds dementia.
Face the Fear Surrounding Dementia
One of the most significant reasons for the stigma of dementia is fear. We fear what we don’t understand, and there can be many different types of fear associated with dementia:
- Fear of change: When caring for a person living with dementia, change occurs both suddenly and over time. Often, we fear these changes because they change the nature of our relationship with the person living with dementia. These changes can also be unpredictable, which leads to another fear…
- Fear of the unknown: With a lack of information and increasing uncertainty comes a rise in fear. We don’t know what exactly is happening inside the brain; we don’t know why these changes are happening so rapidly; we don’t know what is going to happen next or when it is going to happen. Lastly, we don’t know why the person we have known all our lives doesn’t know us anymore.
- Fear of failure: All you want is to provide the best care for your loved one, but even with the proper education, there is fear that we are not doing enough or doing it right. This fear of failure can lead to indecision, stress, and anxiety.
These feelings are valid, but it’s important to face these fears head-on. By acknowledging that there are aspects of dementia that we don’t understand, we open the conversation and allow others to lend their support. Even better, we make it possible and safe for other people to share their fears as well.
Education is a key component of facing these fears. Overcoming the stigma of dementia starts with understanding it. Bella Groves is committed to being a trusted resource for dementia education and care. From our blogs (like this one) to our Level 1: Learning Center, we share knowledge and tools to empower those impacted by dementia.
Seek Help & Support
Caring for a person living with dementia should not be a solitary act. But, unfortunately, for many, that is exactly what it becomes. Caregivers and people living with dementia are isolated, and that isolation only continues to grow as the dementia progresses.
It shouldn’t be this way, and it does not have to be this way. Look for support in your local areas, support groups, care resources, and educational resources. While all the local support will help, it will not compare to the support of family and friends. Involve them in the process from the very beginning so that they can be with you through every part of the journey, good or bad.
At Bella Groves, we provide support for people living with dementia as well as care partners. We are dedicated to helping families have open conversations about dementia care, alleviating fears, and removing the stigma that surrounds the subject.
Be a Part of the Change
Dementia care requires a supportive community. That support starts with honesty. By bringing dementia out of the shadows, you empower others to do the same, and the community of support surrounding dementia will continue to grow.
Like other chapters of life, dementia will have its moments of sadness, stress, anger, laughter, and joy. So, share those experiences with others, tell them about the good, the bad, and the ugly. When you are having a hard day, talk about it. When you find moments of joy, share them.
There is an unfortunate stigma of dementia that exists in the world today, but Bella Groves is committed to changing that. By facing your fears, seeking help, and sharing your experiences, you can be a part of that change.