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Managing the Holidays and Dementia

Submitted by Maria Jose Chaves on 15:55

It is that time of the year, a time to look back and be thankful, and a time to look forward and still be grateful. Give thanks for all the good, and the bad, the necessities that have made us look deeper and appreciate even more what we learnt during those difficult moments. A time to gather as a family and celebrate the holidays.

In all shapes and sizes of families, we see that all have that peculiar aspect that differentiates them from the family next door. For some families, that little detail is Dementia, a condition that seems to be spreading as the generations grow older in the world. Have you thought how you would plan your holidays if one of your loved ones had dementia? Many families do, and here are ways on how they still make these celebrations memorable and happy occasions.

Caregiving A to Z

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 10:34

One can’t help but wonder how the first caregiver ever managed to cope, but fortunately there is now a wealth of knowledge and experiences that new caregivers can draw from. As a matter of fact, the first things you should if thrust upon a caregiving situation are:

  1. Learn as much as you possibly can about your relative’s condition, and
  2. Connect with other, more experienced caregivers.

Types of Elderly Abuse and Recognizing It

Submitted by Mariela Miranda on 16:45

elderly abuse

It might seem obvious to understand when elderly abuse is taking place, however you would be surprised of how this problem is on the rise and how much it needs to be talked about.  Unfortunately, these abuses will even take place at nursing homes where our loved ones are supposed to be under care and comfort. Learning to recognize the signs can save your loved one’s life.  The types of abuse that have been seen and documented against elderly are:

1 in 5 Americans are long-term caregivers

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 09:02

1 in 5 americans

Approximately 20% of Americans are or have been long-term caregivers, according to the Northwestern Mutual Long-Term Caregiving Study. Nearly twice as many people are not sure how they would handle long-term care or are not planning to address their potential long-term care needs. 

Alzheimer’s Diagnosis: What’s next?

Submitted by Maria Jose Chaves on 11:45

November marks the month in which many people around the US gets to continue the efforts on raising more awareness around this growing disease. It also is a special month in which we celebrate those silent heroes that look for no recognition for their daily tasks, those who express their love and care in what they do, the amazing caregivers.

According to an excellent video message spread by the Alzheimer’s Association says that more than 5 million Americans are living with this cognitive condition and that every 67 seconds someone in the United States develops the disease. It also mentions that more than 60% of Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers are women.

6 things you should know before you hire a caregiver

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 12:02

hire a caregiver

Choosing the right caregiver for an aging parent is not something to be taken lightly. Rushing the decision may backfire, but if you had the time to sit down and consider all the pros and cons, you probably wouldn’t need one in the first place. Here are six crucial factors you need to establish beforehand so that you don’t go about it tabula rasa.

  1. Home care is (isn’t) the best alternative. You should proceed to hiring a home caregiver only after you have determined that aging in place is the best alternative for your relative. On principle, an aging parent is not going to want leave their house, but there might be slight difference between what they want and what’s best for them. For example, they may require social interaction, or need 24/7 access to skilled nursing care due to a specific medical condition. In such a case, it would be best to move them while they still have the cognitive ability to adapt to a new situation. Conversely, don’t assume that your loved one will be better off in a nursing home, especially if they are retain a modicum of independence.
  1. The type of assistance needed. Home caregivers can help aging individuals with most daily activities such as bathing, walking, dressing, shopping and cooking, as well as health-related duties like monitoring blood pressure or changing a dressing. Your relative may need assistance with some of these activities and still be proficient in others; conversely, the caregiver may not appreciate it if you expect him or her something that falls outside of their job description. It’s important to be straightforward regarding the expectations that each involved party has concerning this experience.

Keeping your Essence in spite of Dementia

Submitted by Maria Jose Chaves on 10:01

Essence is the attribute or set of attributes that makes an entity what it fundamentally is, and which it has by necessity… without it, it loses its identity.

Someone’s personality and spiritual sense are basic elements of his or her essence. When a person is diagnosed with a cognitive condition, many fear that he or she will lose those qualities that build who they are. Maintaining their spirituality and personhood in dementia takes an effort from both patient and his or her family.

As the person’s memory starts to fade, there are clear moments of lucidity that lets you see their true self, even at the moments of confusion you will see their character trying to make sense of that strange moment. It is important to keep a clear vision that the person’s dementia will not affect their identity; the great significance of their spiritual sense gives them a high resource for coping with the diagnosis and disease management.

Responding to Confusion in Dementia

Submitted by Maria Jose Chaves on 14:16

confusion dementia

Caregivers are life jugglers. When they care for a person living with dementia (PWD) they certainly need to know how to respond to dementia and confusion that comes with it. It seems a little hard to know the tips and tricks of this job description, which is why it is important to be constantly reading about the subject or talk to other fellow caregivers.

Let’s try some empathy, get in the shoes of a PWD… You wake up in a place that seems like your home, although looks like someone painted the walls overnight and moved some furniture, looks good but it would have been nice to be notified about these sudden changes. You find you have some difficulties moving around, you feel more tired than normal… Then things tend to get a little weirder, you walk into your living room and the TV is gone, now there is this strange-looking screen placed on the wall like if it were a painting, everything is starting to get more and more confusing… You walk into your kitchen for a glass of water and you encounter a familiar looking lady who says “good morning Mom!, did you sleep well?”, Mom? Whose mom? Your child is only 12 years old and should be getting ready to go to school! Now everything is a blur, what is happening?!?

How to give a bed bath & beyond

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 12:51

bed bath beyond

Caregivers sometimes have to give immobile patients daily or weekly bed baths in order to address skin health, odor control, and comfort. Additionally, a bed bath is a great opportunity to check the care receiver for redness and sores, especially in skin folds and bony areas. Certain supplies need to be gathered and instructions followed to provide a successful and safe bed bath.

Caregiver charts for the transfer of bariatric patients

Submitted by Pablo Retana on 13:05

baratric patients

Caregivers sometimes feel like they carry the weight of the world on their shoulders, especially if they have to transfer an overweight patient. Maybe the following tables can be the proverbial lever that Archimedes spoke of. 


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