Latest News

Whole Home Approach to Training and Care
Exciting times ahead at Blenheim House as we prepare to extend our Memory Community. We are adding 11 new rooms to our community. Following a whole home approach to care, all staff are receiving training in Dementia care from our Dementia Specialist Sally Latham.
Peter Harvests Third Prize!
We are incredibly proud to announce that Peter Bailey who lives with us at Blenheim House Care Home won third prize for his cucumbers at Corsham Annual Flower Show. Congratulations Peter! Peter grows these vegetables as part of his gardening club at Blenheim House - luckily the chef at Blenheim House has not got his hands on these prize winners yet - but it won't be long until they are crafted into some top notch food for the residents here.
7 Ways to Help Older People Stay Safe Online
For many of us, the internet has made life easier and is an excellent source of information. But it’s important to use the internet safely and protect any device that connects to the internet. This can prove tricky for some older people who may struggle with certain aspects of the web or technology in general. 

The internet can be a powerful and positive tool for older people, and is something we actively encourage the use of in our home, but using it cautiously and understanding potential scams and pitfalls is key. A recent report suggests older people are increasingly at risk of cyber fraud, with more than a million older people duped by email scammers in the UK. 

Here are some tips to share with your loved ones to help them stay safe online:

Practical tips for staying safe online

1. Ensure all devices have the latest software and app updates - these often contain vital security upgrades which help protect devices from viruses and hackers.

2. Creating strong and secure passwords is another crucial step to mitigate the risk of becoming a victim of a hack. The official advice from the Cyber Aware campaign is to use three random words, which a third of over 55s (34%) already do.

3. Use a separate password for email accounts – access to email accounts can allow hackers to take control of many personal and business accounts. 

4. Securing smartphone and tablets with a screen lock – this will provide an extra layer of security to the device.

5. Back-up important data regularly – safeguard important data such as photos and key documents by backing them up to an external hard drive or a cloud-based storage system.

6. Try to avoid using public Wi-Fi to transfer sensitive information such as card details when purchasing online. Hackers can set-up fake WiFi hotspots, which might enable them to intercept sensitive information.

7. Beware of a common scams. One of the most common is fraudsters phoning and claiming to be from a well-known IT company, asking you to follow a few simple instructions to get rid of a virus, update your software etc. What they are really trying to do is gain access to your personal details. Legitimate companies never contact customers in this way. Never respond to a phone call from someone claiming that your computer has a virus. If you get a call like this, hang up straight away.

Spotting the Early Symptoms of Dementia
We are all unique, and so is dementia. It affects people differently so no two people will have symptoms that develop in exactly the same way. However, while there is no standard “check list” for dementia, there are similar symptoms between those that develop the condition between Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia.

The most common signs of dementia

Declining memory
It’s fair to say that most of us are forgetful from time-to-time! We might misplace our keys or wallet, or on occasion forget the name of someone or something. With dementia, these little moments become a little more common and sometimes more concerning. Often it’s not just a name that’s out of reach but who a person is, or perhaps the route home becomes a challenge to remember. 

Language difficulties
Those living with dementia may find it difficult to accurately verbalise their thoughts. It may become noticeable when the person uses an incorrect word or takes longer than usual to respond. Problems with language occur because the diseases that cause dementia can affect the parts of the brain that control language. In some forms of dementia, such as frontotemporal dementia, it is likely to be one of the first symptoms that is noticed.

Familiar tasks become difficult 
At some point during the day, we all tend to do certain tasks on autopilot, like getting dressed, doing housework or making a meal. Those living with a form of dementia may start to get simple steps in these processes wrong. As well as struggling to complete familiar tasks, they may find it difficult to learn how to do new things or follow new routines.

Disorientation
It’s not uncommon for people living with dementia to lose track of where they are, as well as where they were going – even in a place they know well. Although we all lose track of the day of the week now and then, they may even become confused about the time of day, or even mix up night and day.

Changes in behaviour and mood
Behavioural changes are easiest to spot when you know someone well, but can be mistaken for stress, depression, or “just one of those days” – until it becomes most or all of those days. Sudden mood swings, noticeable agitation, major changes in emotional outlook, and even losing interest in hobbies or sleeping more than usual, may be an early sign of dementia.

Problems with concentration and planning 
Those living with dementia can find it challenging to concentrate on things in any environment, including their own home. From difficulty organising a calendar, to planning clothing appropriate for the weather or having trouble following the plot on a television programme; there are numerous other communication and logic signs that can develop with dementia.

If you believe that a relative or someone you care about may be displaying signs of Alzheimer’s or any other form of dementia, talk to your GP independently for advice. You can also read lots more great info on the Alzheimer's Society website and learn how dementia can be managed with the right care in the right environment. 

Bumper Crop at Blenheim House Care Home
The residents at Blenheim House Care Home in Wiltshire have been working hard to produce some superb crops from the gardens. All produce is given to the kitchens at Blenheim House to produce some delicious dishes for it's residents to enjoy. Produce from the garden is currently being used in the kitchens on a daily basis and the Gardening Club is proving very popular with both the residents and the kitchen!