Dementia is confusing. No, I'm not trying out a bad joke. There are so many kinds of dementia. Alzheimer's is the most talked about, but vascular dementia (from strokes or other vascular disease), alcohol or drug related dementia, Lewy Body dementia, Parkinson's dementia - and more - it's all part of the scary picture.
I've made a change in the ezine signup form. I received my first ever drop, which is fine - that is the point of unsubscribe. However, the person indicated the dreaded s word - as in -pam. The last thing I want to do is send anyone unwanted emails, so I've created another signup category. The general one will be ezine only.
Stress and caregiving go hand-in-hand. Even during the time you are not physically caring for an ailing parent or spouse, you are on duty. There is the ever present feeling that an emergency is looming. There is the feeling that if the person we are caring for is unhappy, uncomfortable or otherwise not if a good spot, it is our fault. We should fix it. What happens, of course, is that our own health fails.
A writer takes a blunt, honest look at caregivers and stress. The article is by Jane Glenn Haas for the Orange County Register and appears on the Fort Wayne site. Haas cites the very important Lifespan Respite Care Act that has been signed into law. We will see how well that money is spent by the states.
As I promised, here's one blog I've posted on Alzheimer's and wandering, for my blog on Our Alzheimer's. I read in the newspaper about a woman from the Minneapolis/St. Paul area who was afflicted with early on-set Alzheimer's.
Wandering is one very frightening aspect of Alzheimer's disease. The caregiver doesn't know when or if it will happen. An Alzheimer's patient can be in a fairly early stage, you - the caregiver - can feel quite secure, and - boom - there's Grandpa at the bottom of the hill, going who knows where?
My favorite sport is reading. My favorite TV channel is "off." Hey! What can I say? I'm boring. I also have arthritis. It's genetic. So why an I treating you to this irrelevant (to you) information? In short, I feel the need to explain why I crawled off my couch and followed the on-screen workout of a professional wrestler.
Most of us need a spiritual life of some sort - a spiritual touchstone. I recently read that even people who claim to be atheists find that they "pray" in some way, to some being or thing, quite frequently. The majority of people have some sort of spiritual base, even if they are not active in a structured religion.
I sent out my first audio postcard to ezine members Tuesday (yesterday). Audio is fun. It's one more way for people to get to know me and what I, within the scope of Minding Our Elders, can offer. I'm getting back reports from "awesome" to "you sound like you're whispering." Obviously, I need to tweak things a bit, with the equipment. That's what's great about feedback. I thank everyone who has gotten back to me.
I've received so many private emails about my post relating to alcholism in the elderly that I thought I should direct you to a piece I wrote on the subject for my other blog at Health Central's Our Alzheimer's.
Titled simply "Alchoholism in the Elderly," I began with this:
"Alcoholism in the elderly is a problem that often slides under a physician’s radar. It may not even occur to an elder’s physician to question the drinking habits of a sweet little eighty-year-old lady. And if this lady is questioned, and she does have a drinking problem, she most likely will lie. Elders, particularly women of that age group, are apt to be in total denial, anyway, and likely not want to recognize a problem."