Alice came in saying she’d gotten lost. My mother-in-law had gone to the grocery store – the same one she’d shopped at for thirty years. It was four blocks away. I was staying with my father-in-law, because he couldn’t be alone. A couple of hours passed and I was worried. Finally, I heard her footsteps in the hall. She looked shaken. Confused. I asked if she was okay, and she said she was, but there was a hitch in her voice. Then she said she had gotten lost coming home. That was the last time she drove.
Seattle Times columnist Liz Taylor answers a writer's question on the rules of nursing services in assisted living in "Cryptic eldercare rules mean family must ask the right questions," and in the process, gives an enlightening view of some types of elder care.
Most of us are aware that the stress of caregiving can affect the caregiver's health. I spent two decades involved in direct elder care, much of it with multiple elders. I know it was and is hard work and takes a toll through chronic stress. But an article on PsychCentral.com really brought this problem into sharp focus. To all caregivers: Get help. Get support. Talk to peers. It could save your life.
Yahoo News has published an article by Associated Press writer Sarah Skidmore pointing out the relatively high risk of suicide older adults face. Most resources for suicide prevention target much younger groups of people. Skidmore's article points out, among other things, that older adults often don't realize that they have suffered a lifetime of depression. They don't know anything different. And then there are those elderly couples who try to care for each other and one just reaches the conclusion that they'd both be better off dead. It's not as rare as we'd like to think.
Today is World Alzheimer's Day. If you know, or have known, anyone with dementia, you will understand the importance of research to slow and eventually prevent this dreadful disease. Help someone affected by Alzheimer's if you can. Give an hour of your time so a caregiver can have a break. Donate funds for research. Take time to be kind to someone suffering from dementia. It could be you or someone you love.
Okay. I admit it. I’m a sucker for new research that shows vitamin deficiencies cause many diseases. My mom had studied nutrition way back when, and I grew up taking one of the only supplements available during the 50s and early 60s – the “One a Day” multiple vitamin.
Keeping your day job while caregiving has many benefits. Money comes to mind, as does Social Security if you ever want to retire, and not having a huge gap in your work history, should you drop out to give 24/7 care to elders and then want or need to go back to work. Just ask me. I had a twenty year gap after staying at home to care for elders (quantity of seven) spread out over two decades, plus I have a son with chronic health problems. I did some freelance writing, plus tried a part-time job or two, but none of that added much to my resume.
The National Alzheimer's Association is currently in the midst of their Memory Walk season (of which there are more than 600 nationally), which leads up to World Alzheimer's Day, on September 21st. On their consumer site, www.ActionAlz.org, they are inviting Champions to hold a fundraiser, whether as a party, or on a golf course, to raise money for Alzheimer's research. The goal is to end this mind-robbing disease. Please take a moment to think how you can help.
These videos can be considered off topic, but helping children is never off topic. I'm not going to try to explain, as these two vidos will tell you all about it. Please watch these, rank them high and tell your friends. This is an important project and the videos are professional. Thanks.
Most of us are aware that seniors are a target for many scams. Seniors (and even older boomers) are often considered naive, and sometimes are. They are too trusting. There are so many changes in technology, so many changes in Medicare and Medicaid, just so many things to think about - that we often look to experts for help. As we should. The problem comes when we pick the wrong experts.