ReThink Respite

Caring for a person with dementia can be a positive experience. However, it can also demand a lot of time and energy that could leave you feeling physically, mentally or emotionally tired.

This website provides a portal of information and resources for carers and people living with dementia in Australia. You can click on the menu tabs above to find out about the types of respite available, help with using respite and other carer support.

Why should I ReThink Respite?

Respite supports carers in their role and helps the person living with dementia by providing social support and meaningful activities.

Benefits of Respite:

  • Gives carers time to look after themselves and their own needs such as going to work, an appointment or a volunteer commitment
  • Prevents social isolation by providing carers with opportunities to meet with friends or attend a support group
  • Supports the social participation of people with dementia and their ability to pursue activities of interest
  • Helps keep the carers healthy and improve the quality of care they provide
  • Sustains carers so they can continue their caring role and the person with dementia can stay at home longer
  • Provides carers and people living with dementia with an experience of different care facilities that may be required in the future.

Respite should be:

  • affordable, reliable, flexible and tailored to meet the needs of people living with dementia and their carers
  • incorporated in the early stages of caring and as part of an ongoing plan for support and assistance
  • planned in advance to reduce the likelihood of emergencies due to carer strain.

Respite is not:

  • Just a short break. Instead respite should be incorporated in the early stages of caring and as part of an ongoing plan for support and assistance.
  • A sign that the carer is ‘not coping’. Respite helps sustain carers so they can continue their caring role and the person with dementia can stay at home longer.
  • An indulgence. Respite keeps carers healthy and improves the quality of care they provide.
  • An avoidance of responsibility or duty. Respite should be planned in advance to reduce the likelihood of emergencies due to carer strain.

Key Contacts

Planned Respite
My Aged Care: 1800 200 422

Emergency Respite
Commonwealth Respite and Carelink Centre: 1800 052 222

Carer Gateway
1800 422 737

National Dementia Helpline
1800 100 500