Our speaker in February was Dr Simon Manchip and his talk was entitled ‘Dementia- Hopes and Fears’. His talk was very informative and surprisingly optimistic considering the subject. Dr Manchip described the symptoms of dementia, short term memory problems, loss of recognition, deterioration of speech, apathy and loss of appetite due to loss of sense of smell. Risk factors include smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, irregular heart rhythm (Atrial fibrillation), high cholesterol and Diabetes Mellitus.
It is possible to reduce risk of Dementia by 40% if all of the possible risks factors are reduced. Protective factors include: regular daily exercise, a small amount of alcohol daily (1-2 units alcohol/day for women, 2-3 units for men) and a Mediterranean diet, which includes mostly fresh vegetables, fruit and fish and is low in animal fat such as red and processed meat, cheese and other dairy products. Early recognition allows patients to put financial affairs in order, make a will, arrange power of attorney, and make lifestyle choices. The government is working towards more rapid diagnosis and more community support.
The Meeting was attended by 2 local counsellors aiming to make Wiltshire “Dementia Friendly” along with Wiltshire County Council who are “Dementia Aware”. Wootton Bassett has been chosen as a pilot site. A memory café runs monthly for people with Dementia. Opportunities exist for locals to become involved in their campaign and a tool kit information pack and “forget me not badge” are available. There is also a research trial at Kingshill, Victoria Centre underway with opportunities for patients and families to take part.
Our March meeting was our AGM followed by a game of skittles.
In April we are having a music quiz, from classical to pop and TV and film theme tunes etc. If you would like to join us, come along to Broad Town Village Hall, on Wednesday 16th April at 7.30pm.