Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia

Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia

Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia

If you or someone you support are one of the more than 47 million people worldwide who have been diagnosed with a type of dementia, including Alzheimer's disease, you may wonder: what happens next?

Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia includes all the information you will need about:
The process of being tested and diagnosed
The different types of dementia, including Alzheimer's disease
Where to turn for the support needed to live with the disabilities of dementia, with a focus on wellbeing and quality of life
Treatments, lifestyle changes and rehabilitation
Planning ahead, including wills, powers of attorney, guardianship and advanced care directives

Drawing on real stories of people living with a diagnosis, family members and care partners, Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia focuses on managing the symptoms and living a productive life.

Lee-Fay Low is a writer, academic and registered psychologist who has been conducting research on dementia for 16 years and has published more than 80 articles.

Kate Swaffer was diagnosed with younger onset dementia at age 49. This hasn't stopped her from studying for a PhD in dementia, co-founding Dementia Alliance International and writing blogs and books about dementia.

Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia
New Holland Publishers Australia
Authors: Lee-Fay Low and Kate Swaffer
RRP: $29.99

Interview with Kate Swaffer

Question: Why did you write Diagnosed with Alzheimer's or Another Dementia?

Kate Swaffer: I wrote this book in partnership with Lee-Fay Low, because when I was diagnosed with younger onset dementia, I found that although there was some support (much more today than 8 years ago), it was difficult to manage and navigate. I had wanted one book or resource, with everything I needed to know in it. I hope this book fulfils that need for families and individuals new to dementia. Also, -Dr Google' is today, incredibly overwhelming with an enormous amount of information, and it is difficult to know what is good information. We interviewed hundreds of people connected in some way to dementia, in the hope of covering as much information as possible.

Question: What do you hope readers take from Diagnosed with Alzheimer's or Another Dementia?

Kate Swaffer: My dream is that readers will find this book not only informative about what dementia is and what to expect, but encouraging to live well with dementia for a long as possible, not only die from dementia.

Question: What are the symptoms of Alzheimers or another dementia?

Kate Swaffer: In chapter one of our book, we explain the symptoms of dementia and the many types of dementia, in reasonable detail. As it is not an academic book, it is more of an overview that we hope helps families understand dementia better. Different types of dementia have different symptoms, but the ones commonly looked for include;
Memory loss or changes that effect daily living
Difficulty performing everyday tasks at home or at work
Confusion about time and place
Misplacing things, getting lost in familiar places
Difficulties with language, including word finding and remembering the names of objects or familiar people
Poor or decreased judgement and executive functioning
Changes in personality
Loss of initiative

The occasional forgetting where you put the car keys, or walking into the next room and wondering what you went there for, if you soon remember, is probably a sign of normal ageing.

Question: How does a diagnosis of dementia affect a family?

Kate Swaffer: In chapters 6 we talk specifically about living with a diagnosis of dementia, and in chapter 7, how care partners and families might feel, with a lot of strategies we believe will support everyone. For the person diagnosed, dementia brings with it isolation, stigma and discrimination, and everyone in the family often feels abandoned and isolated. I hope this book will helps others understand as many situations as possible, and provide strategies and ideas for managing the symptoms of dementia as disabilities to enable those of us diagnosed to live as independently as possible. It is difficult coming to terms with a loss of any capacity or function that needs support, and it is also a very tough job emotionally and physically supporting someone you love with dementia. It is not anything like a birthday party for much of the time especially as dementia progresses, but we really hope the practical strategies in our book support a more positive experience for everyone.


Diagnosed With Alzheimer's or Another Dementia
New Holland Publishers Australia
Authors: Lee-Fay Low and Kate Swaffer
RRP: $29.99


Interview by Brooke Hunter