Caring for someone can be a big responsibility but support is available.
If you qualify for Carer’s Allowance this should give you some extra money to ease the financial strains of caring.
Depending on the outcome of your carer’s assessment, you may be eligible for a direct payment from your local authority, also known as a carer’s personal budget.
This is a cash payment that enables you to pay for something that has been identified to help you in your caring role – for example, to pay for respite care, or for membership to a club that gives you time away from your caring role.
If the person you care for has been assessed as needing help from social services, they may be eligible for a personal budget, which should be enough to pay for their care and support needs.
Telecare is assistive technology that can help the person you care for remain independent at home and reassure you that they’re safe when you’re not there. Examples include devices that can detect if someone’s fallen, had a seizure, left the gas on, or is trying to leave the house unsupervised.
Even if you have family and friends around you, they might not understand the strain of being a carer. Carers’ groups can be a good way to get support from other carers who understand what you’re going through, and can share their own experiences.
The Carers UK website has an online forum where you can talk to other people in similar circumstances. If you’re caring for someone with dementia, you may find it useful to talk to other dementia carers through the Alzheimer’s Society online forum.
Other sources of support
There is practical and emotional support available for you and the person you care for. Make sure you request the help you’re entitled to, even if you have to be persistent when asking for it.
If you care for someone with dementia, Admiral Nurses are specialists who aim to improve the quality of life for both you and the person you care for. Dementia UK has a helpline staffed by Admiral Nurses who can provide practical advice and emotional support.
Contact your local Age UK to find out what help is available in your area.