Across Norfolk, this Dementia Awareness Week (20-26 May) Specsavers stores are celebrating being Dementia Friends for two years.

There are now currently 37 qualified Dementia Friends, who took part in training designed by Specsavers and the Alzheimer’s Society. They are recognisable by a badge which is worn on their uniforms.

Regional relationship manager of Specsavers stores across Norfolk, Eileen Moriarty said: ‘It’s so important for us to support all of our customers and this fantastic piece of training has been vital in understanding those who live with dementia and their friends and family. People with dementia often have issues with their sight and hearing and we need to ensure that we can provide them with a fantastic service.’

Comprehensive training

The training covers a range of aspects, specifically those issues in an optics and hearing context. The teams learnt how the condition can affect different people in a variety of ways and how issues with sight and sound can leave cause them to feel isolated and confused.

The comprehensive training created as a collaboration between Specsavers and the Alzheimer’s Society covers all aspects of dementia and how it affects people in different ways – with a focus on the relevance to optometry and audiology and how senses can be affected, including sight and hearing.

Annual hearing tests recommended

Specsavers recommends anyone over the age of 55 to undergo regular hearing tests as, according to research, people with untreated hearing loss are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s. Hearing tests at Specsavers are free.

Dementia Friends are available in Diss, East Dereham, Fakenham, Hunstanton, Norwich, Sheringham and Thetford

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