Living Well with Dementia

Are you caring for someone living with Dementia? If so, we want you to know that you’re not alone and we understand the challenges you’re facing. Our MD Jo Bonser has lived experience helping to support her Mum for over six years living at home with Vascular Dementia.

Welcome to Living Well with Dementia, our latest innovative resource designed as a holistic resource for you.. Jo wanted to write a guide to help others also caring for someone living with dementia, as she understands your challenges, to include helpful information on the main symptoms of dementia, recognition of the challenges you could be facing and the consequences, best practice advice, hints, tips on how to manage these symptoms, and a clear understanding of how our product solutions can help you to meet the needs of the person living with dementia.

A collage of three female elderly dementia patients who are living well with dementia.

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For people living with dementia:

‘Behind every behaviour there is a feeling

And beneath each feeling is a need

And when we meet the need rather than focussing on the behaviour,

 we begin to deal with the cause and not the symptom’

And always remember – 

‘Don’t approach the challenges that come along with dementia with dread.

Instead, think positive and find a solution.’ 

– Bob DeMarco

We are here to help and support you on your journey.

Loss of appetite 

Weight loss is common in people living with Dementia and one of the causes can be loss of appetite as people:

  • Forget to eat or drink
  • Have difficulty recognising food items
  • Have a change in appetite or taste
  • Have difficulty communicating food choices
  • Have lack of physical activity
Read More

Difficulty Eating

People with dementia can have physical and sensory difficulties that can affect eating and drinking including difficulty with cutlery, coordination to eat independently and remembering to open their mouths.

They may be experiencing:

  • Problems with coordination
  • Difficulty chewing and swallowing
  • Changes to their taste and smell
  • Judging temperature
  • Problems with eyesight
Read More


The risk of dehydration increases for those with dementia, and it becomes more concerning as the disease progresses. Here are some of the reasons people can become dehydrated:

  • Forgetting to drink
  • Reduced sense of thirst
  • Taking medications which promote fluid loss
  • Forgetting how to drink
  • Poor eyesight
  • Poor coordination
Read More


A person with dementia is more likely to have accidents, problems with the toilet or incontinence than a person of the same age who doesn’t have dementia.

The reasons for this can include:

  • Slow reaction to needing to use the toilet
  • Failing to get to the toilet in time
  • Inability to communicate the need to go to the toilet
  • Disorientation and inability to find, recognise, or use the toilet.
  • Not understanding a prompt from someone to use the toilet
Read More

Managing Falls

People living with a dementia tend to be at higher risk of falling and are three times more likely to fracture their hip when they fall.

 This can be caused by:

  • Increased levels of confusion
  • Impaired vision and spatial awareness
  • Lack of nutrition and dehydration
  • Disorientation
  • Side effects of medication
Read More


Sometimes a person with dementia will become more agitated, aggressive or confused more often in the late afternoon or early evening. This is known as ‘Sundowning’ or ‘late day confusion’.

Sundowning may be caused by:

  • Disturbance to the 24-hour ‘body clock’ that tells our bodies when to sleep, caused by the physical changes to the brain
  • Loss of routine at a previously busy time of day
  • Too little or disturbed sleep
  • Too little or too much light
  • Prescribed medication wearing off
Read More

Memory Loss

Memory loss is one of the most common symptoms of dementia, caused by damage to brain cells which interferes with the ability of brain cells to communicate with each other, and can affect thinking, behaviour and feelings.

This damage interferes with the ability of brain cells to communicate with each other, and can affect thinking, behaviour and feelings. The brain has many distinct regions, each of which is responsible for different functions (for example, memory, judgment and movement). When cells in a particular region are damaged, that region cannot carry out its functions normally.

This can mean:

  • New memories are unable to form
  • More recent memories are often no longer accessible
  • Older more deep-seated memories become the most recent
Read More


Dementia can affect a person’s ability to remember and understand basic everyday facts, such as names, dates and places. The ability to process information may deteriorate over time, delaying a person’s response to questions. Eventually, they may struggle to convey what they want to say, or to understand others.

Communication problems may arise because of:

  • Impaired speech
  • Comprehension
  • Hearing
  • Vision
  • Physical sensation
Read More

Mood changes

Behaviour and personality often change with dementia, and people can act in ways that are very different from their “old self” which can be hard for family and friends to deal with.

This usually happens because a person is losing neurons (cells) in parts of the brain and the behaviour changes often depend on which part of the brain is losing cells.

Common personality and behaviour changes you may see include:

Read More

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Customer Testimonials

“We’ve built a strong working relationship with Hcsuk over many years, having used them to source, install and service our medical training equipment. We have always found the team very professional, helpful, and well-organised. We’d like to give a particular shout out to Phil, the technician / engineer who has been the consistent friendly face visiting our business to inspect and test our mobility hoists every 6 months. Thank you for all your support and advice.”

P. B. (Care Manager), Blue Bird Care Ltd

You are part of a great company, if we can help you grow by contracting you out to our sites its good for you, but it’s great for us because your service is fantastic, very efficient, everyone within Hcsuk is super helpful in answering queries and every time we’ve had an issue, Hcsuk has always been there to solve the problem almost immediately, which is fantastic.

Leicestershire County Council

Truly exceptional levels of customer service, the best I have experienced for many years. Very helpful staff made follow up calls to ask how the equipment was performing and supplied extra user instructions to supplement the manufacturers manual. I would not hesitate to order from this company again.

Savills Estate Agents

We would just like to pass on our thanks for all of your help with our orders and would be pleased if you would also pass on our thanks to the manufacturers for being so accommodating in meeting our requirements. We have found everyone very helpful.

Lincs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Since I set up the account for Hcsuk over 18 months ago I have found them to be an excellent advocate of our products. They have been willing to learn about the technical and servicing elements to our hoists and the sales staff have really taken on board and proactively promoted our range where possible. I feel that as a company Hcsuk have got the desire and right people in place for growing in this competitive industry. They seem to push themselves to go that little bit further and offer that little bit more to stand out from the rest. May our relationship continue going from strength to strength.

Joerns Healthcare

As a care home manager I have used Hcsuk for my supplies for the last 20 years in two homes. I have always found them to be helpful and reliable. Their products are of the highest standards, they are able to source anything. The delivery service is prompt and regular so I do not have to keep large amounts of stock. They supply extra services such as servicing and repairs which are done efficiently, and training in COSHH. The reps are pleasant and helpful bringing new products to my attention but are never ”pushy”. Aftercare is good, any problems soon sorted. I would recommend them highly and would not think of using anyone else.

Littleover Nursing Home

HPC have supplied Hcsuk (Health Care Services Ltd) for well over a decade now and we would consider them to be a high quality and professional business run in an organised and progressive manor. We do not rank our customers or have a preferred customer status but if we were to introduce such a scheme I can confirm that Hcsuk would easily make such a grade.

HPC Healthline

As a manufacturer we look for key values in a distributor some of these include honesty, reliability, commitment and reputation. Hcsuk carry all of these and many more. With a twenty plus year working relationship we now place Jo and the team at the top of our distributor list. I have no hesitation in recommending Hcsuk to any prospective manufacturer or customer and wish Jo and the team all the best for the future.

Cleenol Group Ltd

It is brilliant that we are able to ring Health Care Services and that you will go the extra mile to get us the stock we need as soon as possible.

Rykneld View Nursing Home

Just to say a huge thankyou to you and your fantastic team, and I mean that from the Heart. I have never before experienced such a person centred company.

Hampton Grange Nursing Home

What I like about working with Health Care Services is the relationship we have built up and the personal service. The homes report that you always deliver on time, the quality is consistently good and the prices competitive. Your team members are always willing to go that extra mile for us and if ever we have an issue there is always someone there to save the day.

Eastgate Care

Thanks to Jo for going over and above to get us our items in time for our special event at Buddleia House – it was very much appreciated. A massive thankyou for your continued assistance as a supplier to ourselves.

Buddleia House

We have always received excellent services from everyone at HCS at our 2 care homes, especially Lee, Jo and Phil. Always professional with a quick response time. Nothing ever seems too much trouble. Recently I had to use them personally for equipment to enable my mothers discharge from hospital. I had a response within the hour for prices and delivery came straight from the manufacturer to speed up delivery. Phil arrived at the same time to put the equipment together for us! I can’t thank them enough for putting our minds at ease and for the continued support from a personal and professional perspective. I’d recommend them to anyone requiring care equipment and its nice to support local businesses. Especially when they do such a good job!!

Orla House

I contacted HCSUK trying to find a hoist that could be operated unaided by the client. I had become very disheartened, no-one was really helpful until I spoke to Donna at HCSUK.

Donna was incredibly understanding, her professionalism raised my spirits again. Everything Donna said she would do she did, including arranging for me to speak to Andrew the salesman who like Donna was incredibly helpful, happy to bring two machines to demonstrate.

I can’t recommend them highly enough. They are good people.

Penelope C

I spoke to Lee Atterbury 2 weeks ago, when I was despairing about the prospect of finding any equipment to help my husband in the bathroom. I had tried all the popular brands, but none were right for his needs.

When I spoke to Lee he understood what I was saying and set about trying to find what we need. He was so patient and understanding and gave me the confidence to explore outside the box.

I spoke to Lee today and was able to tell him that we, hopefully, have found the solution. I am sorry that it was not a product you sell, though you may in the future, but will certainly look first to HCS for other products.

Thank you so much to Lee for first class customer service.

Christine G, Sheffield

VAT Relief Information

Conditions for VAT relief for disabled people

Some of the products which can be purchased from the Hcsuk website are available for an eligible person to purchase without paying VAT on them. HM Revenue and Customs sets out the conditions when equipment for disabled people might be free of VAT and how to claim exemption from paying VAT on these products.

Products a can only be exempt from VAT when all the following conditions are met:

  1. The customer is eligible to purchase supplies at the zero rate
  2. The goods are for the personal or domestic use of the customer
  3. The goods and services are eligible to be supplied at the zero rate

A more detailed explanation of each of these conditions is given below, but you should visit the HM Revenue and Customs Website to fully understand the conditions

The product must be being purchased for someone who is chronically ill or disabled.

A person is ‘chronically sick or disabled’ if he/she is a person:

It does not include a frail elderly person who is otherwise able-bodied or any person who is only temporarily disabled or incapacitated, such as with a broken limb.

‘personal or domestic’ use means that the supply must be made available specifically for the use of an eligible individual.

You don’t have to physically buy the goods in person. If your parent, guardian or wife or husband buys the goods and services for you, then you won’t be charged VAT.

What counts as personal or domestic use?

Personal or domestic use means that the goods or services are supplied for your own private use, rather than for business purposes. Also, the goods or services must be just for your own use – not for use by anyone else, or chronically sick or disabled people in general. However, if you and your partner are both chronically sick or disabled and you buy goods or services for both of you to use, then you won’t have to pay VAT.

Products which are offered for sale on this website which qualify for VAT relief to be claimed for an eligible person.

The products which can be bought without paying VAT are:

Only the products on our site carrying the VAT exemption price (the smaller price marked ex VAT) are eligible to be purchased this way and you must tick the box on the basket page indicating that you wish to claim VAT exemption on the items in your basket that are eligible for VAT relief.

How to claim

On the my basket page of this website a link to the online declaration form is provided if the basket contains a product that qualifies for VAT relief. You must tick the box to state you wish to claim VAT relief on the eligible product and complete in full the reason by which you are ‘chronically sick or disabled’ and name and address of the claimant. If possible the person making the claim should complete this form, but a family member, carer or medical professional may complete the form on the claimants behalf. To submit the claim and receive the VAT relief, click the ‘Submit VAT Relief Claim’ button before proceeding to the checkout.

Please note that all orders submitted with a VAT relief claim form completed are checked before the order is processed.

It is necessary to complete a separate claim form each time a qualifying product is purchased from Hcsuk.


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