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August 2010

Should We Take Someone with Alzheimer’s to a Spouse’s Funeral?

Dear Carol: We are having problems making a decision. My father-in-law passed away and my mother-in-law has Alzheimer’s disease. She only remembers her husband when someone mentions his name. Otherwise she doesn’t talk about him or even seem to know about him. She’s more worried about her parents who, of course, are long dead. Do we take her to his funeral? Read more →


The stigma of Alzheimer's and dementia: How to cope

People stare. Most aren’t unkind, they are just curious, but when someone “different” from the norm becomes part of their environment, they often stare – without intending to be unkind. Anyone who has cared for a disabled child knows this. Anyone who has a visible disability of their own knows this. Read more →


When Is Poor Hygiene a Health Issue for the Elder?

The fact that many elders don't get around to bathing or changing clothes, common as it is, may not be a health issue. It's certainly a social issue, however, and it's one caregivers are acutely aware of. Personal hygiene is rather subjective to begin with, so when people ask about getting their elders to be "cleaner," I generally ask about past habits. Read more →


Researchers Find Achieving Goals Can Be Important to People with Alzheimer’s

Most people find some satisfaction when a goal of some type, even a small one, is achieved. Why should people with Alzheimer’s feel differently? According to an article on Medical News Today titled, “Achieving Goals Empowers People with Dementia,” researchers at Bangor University, Wales Read more →


Caregiver Stress Can Make Carers Feel Trapped: What to Do?

Human beings, especially loving human beings, seem to have a penchant for "beating themselves up" over imperfections. This isn't the place to go into all the various psychological issues that make us feel we need to do everything perfectly, but the most common and obvious issues generally stem from trying to please our parents by being very, very good, and not feeling as if we measure up. Just because we are all grown up, doesn't mean we are, well all grown up. Read more →


When a Young Adult Becomes a Caregiver for a Parent

Dear Carol: My wife’s dad suffers from kidney failure, diabetes and has had two strokes. She is just 29-years-old and is his legal guardian. She feels very much stuck in her life and I worry that this will have long term effects on her, as stress can certainly make people sick. There is not sufficient money to cover the cost of care for assisted living or a nursing home, and I think he really needs that. We live in Minnesota. Where does she turn? Frank Read more →