There are approximately 670,000 carers of people with dementia in the UK. People who support, care for, or represent people with dementia respond to the situation in very different ways. One challenge that carers often face is in maintaining social relationships or making new relationships. It can also be difficult to communicate to others how they feel about caring and representing a person with dementia.

What are the main aims of the study?Digital platform 2

Previous research studies have shown new communication technology can help people who face challenges in developing social relationships because of their work or lifestyle. This study is looking to understand if there are technologies that can help carers socially by helping them meet others as well as provide information and support.

What does it involve for a participant?

Participants will be asked to complete a questionnaire which should only take 15 – 20 minutes to complete. The questionnaire is available to complete online.

Participants will be asked to complete the questionnaire on two occasions (6 months apart). This is so that the study team can check whether changes in a participant’s answers to one question influence their responses to others.

How long is the study for?

Each time period for the study will be open for around 6 weeks. The first time period is open now, the second will begin in approximately 6 months’ time.

What do you hope the outcomes of the study will be?

This research is part of a larger study investigating communication technology in people who act as carers for those with dementia. This study is working with carer organisations and with experts in technology design. They are hoping to learn more about the social experiences of those who care for someone with dementia and what their support needs might be, if any. It is also hoped that this study will help to develop new technologies that carers can use to communicate with others, as well as receive information and support in a way that works for them.

Where is the study based?

The study is based at the University of Exeter, however as this is an online study, the team are hoping to recruit participants throughout the UK.

Who can take part?

The study team are interested to hear from anyone over the age of 18 who cares for, or represents a person with dementia.

Martin-In-GardenYou can see if you are eligible for this study, as well as others around the nation, by logging into your Join Dementia Research account.

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