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Thinking of a break or weekend getaway?

A travel factsheet specifically aimed at people with dementia and their families, has been published as part of the Dementia: Understand Together awareness campaign, led by the HSE in partnership with the Alzheimer Society of Ireland and Genio.

The tips are intended to assist people with dementia, their families and carers, who may be planning a weekend away or a holiday break in ensuring that their trip is enjoyable. The tips include advice on choosing the right holiday destination and how and when to travel, suggestions as to how to make the journey more comfortable and safe, and ideas to maximise enjoyment of the holiday. The travel factsheet can be downloaded.

Professor Brian Lawlor,Consultant Psychiatrist and Chair of the Dementia: Understand Together campaign, comments:

“While a diagnosis of dementia does change people’s lives, we know from talking to people with the condition that people can still live well with dementia. We can all make a difference and play our own part in making life that little bit better. While the situation of every person with dementia is different, for those who are in a position to take a break, it can offer huge benefits for both the person with dementia and their loved ones. The benefits include keeping the brain active by exploring new places and activities, maintaining social stimulation and making new friends, and enjoying physical activity such as walking, cycling or swimming. Planning is, of course, vital when it comes to going away and we hope that these tips will offer some useful guidance and support in ensuring that a trip is safe, comfortable and, most of all, enjoyable.”

The travel factsheet is published against a backdrop of 55,000 people in Ireland currently living with dementia, with approximately 4,000 people developing dementia each year – that’s 11 people every day. Half a million of us have had a family member with dementia and with the number of people living with dementia in Ireland expected to more than double by 2040, more and more of us are going to find ourselves supporting a loved one with dementia. 

Top 10 travel tips for people with Dementia and their families

In addition to the travel factsheet, some of Ireland’s leading travel organisations, including the daa, Bus Éireann, Dublin Bus, Iarnród Éireann and Irish Rural Link, have signed up as partners to the Dementia: Understand Together campaign. The campaign will continue to work with these organisations to look at ways to improve the travel experience for people with dementia and their families in 2018. 

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