Blogs

Coordinating a Network of Care

Cheering on our favorite football teams this fall is getting us thinking: Does your loved one have an all-star care team?

To keep your number one fan in optimum health as they progress through the stages of dementia, their care team roster could include friends and family, doctors, nurses, physical therapists, pharmacists, memory care and other specialists, as well as a care coordinator. Depending on your loved one’s needs, that care coordinator could be a professional, or it could be you.

Creating a Manageable Daily Life Plan: 5 Tips for Busy Caregivers

Each day, you get your parent up, washed and dressed, dentures and hearing aids in, morning meds administered, breakfast served ... if you’ve been caring for a parent with memory loss for any length of time, you probably have the rest of their daily care plan down. But what about their daily life plan? Is your loved one engaged in meaningful activity throughout the day? Do they feel valued and safe? Are they happy?

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Polypharmacy: When Quantity Affects Quality

One pill makes you larger and one pill makes you small … go ask Alice if she remembers which one is which. Managing multiple medication may take a song or two to remind you which medication you take for which aliment. Polypharmacy is a common problem facing many older adults but managing those medications does not have to be a song and dance.

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Finding Their Voice: 7 Tips to Help Children Discuss Memory Loss

When a grandparent starts showing Alzheimer’s symptoms, children may feel scared, angry, anxious, stressed, frustrated ... just like adults but without the benefits of emotional maturity and life experience. Giving each kid a safe, healthy way to express and process their feelings is critical to their emotional health and relationship with their grandparent moving forward.

Leaving Your Legacy: 5 Eye-Opening Benefits of Ancestry Research

Grandparents Day is September 13, a great time to honor all the grandparents and grandchildren in your family, past and present and future, by recording your family’s legacy.

With the simplicity of at-home DNA tests and the massive amounts of data available on sites such as Ancestry.com, MyHeritage.com, and 23andMe.com, millions of Americans are turning into bona fide genealogy sleuths – and for lots of interesting and useful reasons.

Self-Care: One Size Does Not Fit All

Today was one for the books. Your loved one resisted your every request, wandered halfway to the sidewalk before you noticed she was missing, and there wasn’t anything “fine” about today’s dining experiences. You deserve to treat yourself to a long bubble bath and a box of bonbons for a job well done.

No, really. You do.

“Any day that ends with a caregiver having done his or her best is a job well done,” says Suzy McCann, Community Relations Director of YourLifeTM of Pensacola, a Memory Care community in Pensacola, Florida.

The Caregiver Balancing Act

You’re not a magician, but some days, you sure do feel like one.

Juggling, tightrope walking, lion taming ... however you visualize your balancing act, successfully managing multiple roles, responsibilities, and relationships all at once is a tricky business. Throw caregiving duties into the mix without adjusting your rhythm, passing tasks to a teammate, or removing distractions can lead to a lot of dropped balls, missed steps, and confused cats.

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How to Step In ... to Step Back: Supporting Independence in Mild Stages of Dementia

An initial dementia diagnosis can be overwhelming for families experiencing it for the first time. Many who don’t understand the many stages of memory loss might rush to step in and, among other things, hang up their loved one’s car keys or try to get them to move if they live alone.

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The Power of Being Mindfully Present

Has caring for a loved one with memory loss become a frustrating, all-consuming task? Virtually all caregiver experiences are full of highs and lows – and it’s a slippery slope to caregiver burnout when the lows begin to outweigh the highs. But do the lows really outweigh the highs? Or are they just the squeakiest wheels getting all of your grease?