Dementia, Volume 23, Issue 5, Page 817-849, July 2024. BackgroundThe life expectancy of people with a learning disability is increasing and with this comes a greater risk of developing dementia. Dementia poses new challenges for both family and formal learning disability carers as they try to support dementia’s progressive nature and quality of life for their care recipient. This qualitative systematic review explores the evidence base of family and formal carers’ experiences and needs of caring for someone with both a learning disability and dementia.MethodsSix electronic databases (PubMed, PsycINFO, Cochrane Library, Prospero, Scopus, CINAHL), were searched in May 2022, utilising a predefined search strategy. Thirteen papers fulfilled inclusion criteria and were included in in the review.ResultsThematic synthesis was used to explore and synthesise the qualitative findings of the studies. Four conceptual themes were identified following analysis: Knowledge and skills, Accessing support, Repercussions of dementia for carers, Influences of continuity of caring role.ConclusionThere are significant training and educational needs for all carers who support the dual diagnosis of dementia and learning disability. Differences between family and formal carers relate to the organisational support and process available to formal carers. Parity across services combined with sufficiently trained carers may support dementia diagnosis and improve quality of care provided. Further research is needed to address environmental, and economic barriers carers face to facilitate ageing in place for their care recipients.

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This post is Copyright: Michelle Hughes | January 4, 2024
SAGE Publications: Dementia: Table of Contents