Rate of falls in older adults with learning disabilities substantially higher than in general elderly population Netherlands study finds

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Background Falls and fall-related injuries are a common and serious problem for older people. Nice guidance published in June last year suggested that 30% of people over 65 and 50% of people over older than 80 fall at least once a year. Falls are estimated to cost the NHS more than £2.3 billion per year. [read the full story…]

Little practical engagement of people with learning disabilities with issues of death and dying despite in principle support for right to know

Comfort

We have posted previously about end of life issues for people with learning disabilities, for example, pointing to the impact of training in palliative care as well as to resources such as the films made by Change for the dying matters coalition that can be used to help include people with learning disabilities in discussions [read the full story…]

Little attention paid to menopausal transition experiences or wellbeing of women with learning disabilities

Middle-aged woman

In the mid 1990s, a questionnaire study carried out by Carr and Hollins in Wandsworth suggested that menopause may occur earlier in women with learning disabilities and that for women with Down syndrome, it may occur earlier still. These findings were strengthened by work a couple of years later in a U.S. study by Schupf [read the full story…]

Support workers lacked knowledge of early indicators of dementia in people with learning disabilities

our voice

People with learning disabilities have been found to have increased risk of developing mental health problems. The knowledge of mental health issues amongst support workers however is also known to be sometimes lacking. The authors of this study were interested in looking at what support workers knew about mental health of older people with learning [read the full story…]

Service providers’ perceptions show support for approaches to active ageing amongst older people with learning disabilities

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People with learning disabilities are living longer. The Royal College of Nursing website  suggests that over the course of the last century, life expectancy for this group has increased significantly, with mean life expectancy estimated to be 74, 67 and 58 for those with mild, moderate and severe learning disabilities respectively. The researchers in this [read the full story…]

Sarcopenia found in adults with learning disabilities at a lower age than in the general population

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Sarcopenia is the degenerative loss of skeletal muscle mass associated with ageing. It is also a component of frailty syndrome. The researchers in this Dutch study identified that this issue had been little studied in people with learning disabilities. They worked with 884 older people described as having borderline to profound learning disabilities, all aged [read the full story…]

Older family carers look to find support for offspring in their own homes

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A few years ago, the older family carers initiative, run by the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities published a series of reports and some excellent guidelines on providing support to help inform not only practitioners, but commissioners and of course older family carers themselves of their rights and the kind of support they could might [read the full story…]

Review identifies disappointing results from trials of alzheimer’s treatment in older adults with learning disabilities

dementia

Yesterday, we posted about the increasing longevity of people with learning disabilities and the potential for problems with sleep disturbance in this group. Today, we look at a review of the current evidence relating to the age related needs of these older adults who may be at increased risk of age-related disorders like dementia and [read the full story…]

Estimated prevalence of sleep problems in adults with learning disabilities varies widely says systematic review

Sleep

Life expectancy in people with learning disabilities has increased over recent years, and sleep problems become more common in people who are advancing in years. Sleep problems are also generally more common in people with learning disabilities than those without. The authors of this systematic review were interested to look at the way in which [read the full story…]

Internet based groups for older carers of people with learning disabilities can improve social support

Computer

We recently posted about the views of older people with learning disabilities and the things they wanted in relation to their support. In recent years there have also been a number of projects that have focused on ways to provide support to older carers of people. Those projects have suggested the key mediator role of [read the full story…]