I hope that I have posted in the right section.
In June 2011, I was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's Disease... I was 45 years old. It really didn't come as a shock to be honest, because my family and I had been recognising the signs, because my mum is in the later stages of the disease and my grandma died with Alzheimer's Disease related symptoms too. What did come as a shock, was the early progress of the disease in me - my mum is elderly and my grandma was in her late 70s when the illness hit her too.
What makes it all a strain is that I am also the carer for my mum, and to top it all, this year her husband, my stepfather, has been diagnosed with the first stages of vascular dementia. In March, I had to take the drastic action of putting my mum into emergency respite care, as my stepfather was suffering terrible dillusions with his illness. It broke my heart when I made her social worker enforce the act, and when I had to leave her there, but I knew it was for the best. It was by sheer hard work between me and my stepsister, that luckily, the very next day, we managed to also get my stepfather put into respite care with her, so they were back together. This settled my mother, and helped my stepdad in his recovery.
They are now both back at home, with a care plan set in place for carers to call on them four times a day, for washing, cooking, hygiene and cleaning (my mother and stepfather pay for this too) and it gives me some relief, but to be honest, this last year has been a nightmare, not only with my diagnosis, but with having to be a carer to to my mother and stepfather with dementia as well.
I now have some time to think about my health. Along with other illnesses, my Alzheimer's Disease has caused me to have to readjust my life completely. I have been on a cognitive stimulation therapy course, and go on another one at the end of next month, but there really isn't much available for people with working age dementia and I find this so frustrating... it really does feel like we are being left behind in our needs.
I have an excellent dementia medical team however. The psychiatrist, my CPN who deals with my needs, and specialises with the dementia team is a godsend and has sorted many things for me, however I now have another battle to fight!
I have recently received a letter from the DWP stating that I am being took off my Incapacity Benefit and going onto ESA... and they have placed me in the 'work-related' category, saying that an adviser will help me take steps to get me back into work! - that will be a challenge in itself!
Anyway, thanks for reading, and I look forward to hearing your replies... thank you!