The third Monday of January is known as Blue Monday, it is a day that is statistically marked by increased reports of low moods. In fact, it’s considered to be the most depressing day of the year. For people looking after someone with dementia, they can feel it even more.
Why is this time of year so depressing?
There are various factors contributing to low moods at this time. The aftermath of Christmas has left many of us with overspending, and the distant prospect of the next payday adds financial stress. The long evenings, less-than-ideal weather, and the likely abandonment of New Year’s resolutions further compound these feelings. It’s no wonder that numerous individuals find themselves in a low mood.
How about you? Are you currently experiencing a dip in your mood? As a family caregiver for someone living with dementia, it’s acknowledged that the emotional and physical challenges you confront are substantial. Research indicates that caregivers face specific stressors including:
- Stress, worry and fear
- Social Isolation
- Financial concerns
- Physical health issues
- Low self-esteem
- Frustration and anger
Recognising and addressing these challenges is crucial, and support systems can play a significant role in helping caregivers navigate these complexities.
Care giving is undoubtedly challenging and often gives rise to a range of emotions, including stress, guilt, anger, sadness, and isolation — sometimes culminating in depression. The impact of depression varies among individuals, manifesting differently and at distinct stages. For instance, some may grapple with depression immediately following the diagnosis of a family member with Alzheimer’s. Meanwhile, others may encounter depressive feelings as Alzheimer’s advances, leading to a decline in the cognitive abilities of the affected person.
At ADSS, we prioritise the wellbeing of the people we support, offering a comprehensive approach to living well with dementia. Our commitment is evident through a variety of wellbeing groups tailored to the diverse needs of those we support. From engaging singing groups to physical activity sessions, these groups aim to release endorphins, contributing to an enhanced mood among participants.
The positive feedback from attendees shows the value of our wellbeing groups and day centre service, creating a supportive environment where individuals genuinely enjoy their time. Blue Monday serves as a poignant reminder of the emotional challenges faced by caregivers of individuals with dementia. However, our holistic approach to wellbeing, encompassing group activities, physical exercise, and peer support, aims to provide a beacon of support through the services we offer. Here are a few testimonials from people who use our services:
“The singing groups have been incredibly beneficial for my husband, who isn’t very communicative. Whenever he participates in the Singing Back The Memories group, he enthusiastically sings along to every song. This not only uplifts his mood but also enables him to actively engage and enjoy the experience, providing him with a positive and enjoyable time.”
– Wife and carer of someone living with dementia.
“Dad goes to peer support at Safeharbour twice a month where he leaves with a smile on his face, says he has enjoyed it but cannot remember what he did.
– Daughter and carer of someone living with dementia.
“The Beacon is my happy place” – Someone living with dementia who attends the day centre.
“It is the highlight of her week” – Family of someone living with dementia who attends the day centre.
If you or someone you know would like to join our wellbeing groups, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01474 533990 (option 3).