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February 2018
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April 2018

March 2018

When dementia symptoms appear it’s natural to fear that the person affected has an incurable form of dementia. Rather than reacting with panic, however, it’s far better to try to remain calm and have a specialist make the determination. Many forms of dementia are incurable, of course, but other conditions can present symptoms that resemble those of dementia but are in fact reversible. Read more →


Choosing an individual or a company to come into our home, or that of a vulnerable loved one, to provide assistance with anything from cleaning to personal services is never easy. We are giving an unknown person access to not only our property but to the safety of our loved one who may need care while we are not able to supervise. Choosing the right person or company should be done methodically, and education can help you ask the right questions. Read more →


An ongoing concern for many older adults, as well as their adult children, is whether they really need to pay for the services of an attorney when planning for their finances and health care in old age. This is a valid question, and people of modest means often feel that they can’t afford an attorney. However, the reality is that many elder care problems faced by families can be avoided by consulting an attorney before their loved one needs any form of care. Read more →


As you watch your parents or other beloved elders age, sometimes worry becomes inevitable. Should they have housing upgrades? Can they continue to live independently? Your intention isn’t to take over their lives, but you may genuinely want to start the conversation about possible future changes. How do you do this without causing a backlash? Read more →


At age 85, Fred Bartlit is still skiing slopes that would challenge an accomplished skier decades younger. The reason? Serious strength training that he dubs the StrongPath. Through the years, Fred has taught others interested in creating and/or protecting physical and cognitive health. This has now led to the publication of a new book titled Choosing the StrongPath: Reversing the Downward Spiral of Aging. Fred co-authored the book with Steven Droullard and Dr. Marni Boppart. Read more →


...Then there’s that first time when it really registers with you that your parents are aging. Perhaps this awareness occurs after one of them has suffered an emotional or physical trauma. Or it could even strike during a time of seemingly little significance, such as bright sunlight highlighting some gray in mom’s hair, or a strong reading lamp enhancing the sag in dad’s once firm jawline.   This new reality may simply nudge you, or it may sock you in the gut, but reality it is. Your parents are aging. They are on their way to “being old.” Read more →


Dear Carol: My mom has had Multiple Sclerosis (MS) for 30 years and is nearing the end of her life. She lives in a nursing home and I visit daily. Mom’s been struggling to swallow and has been sick with a urinary tract infection (UTI). Sometimes she's even thought that my dad, who died two years ago, is with her. She was eating and drinking little and was anxious. Two days ago, the staff told me that this could be the beginning of the end, and the time for comfort care may be coming, but they wanted to try a different antibiotic, a sedative to calm her, and a small amount of morphine for pain before making that decision. I agreed. It’s only been a day since she started the new drugs, but Mom now seems brighter and more positive. She’s eaten some soft food and she’s urinating some. I don't know what to think. Is this a pre-death rally or is she responding to the medications and actually getting better? She refuses to return to the hospital or having a feeding tube, which is consistent with her lifelong wishes. Any help or advice would be appreciated. CL Read more →


Acute inflammation is the body’s natural response to tissue damage. Its purpose is to defend the body against harmful substances, dispose of dead or dying tissue and to promote the renewal of normal tissue. Therefore, inflammation is normal if we are ill from a virus or bacterial infection or we injure ourselves.  Read more →


Stress has long been considered a major risk for developing Alzheimer’s, but there hasn’t been any real understanding as to why this is so. Now, researchers at the Center for Translational Research in Neurodegenerative Disease at the University of Florida think that they’ve come closer to discovering the connection. Dr. Todd Golde, director of the Center, and his team have found how a hormone released by the brain in response to the body’s stress increases production of a protein associated with Alzheimer’s development.  Read more →


Most caregivers embrace living with and caring for their parents because they want the best for them. They take on the responsibility out of love and/or need. Some caregivers move in with their parents because they were in a troubled spot themselves, trying to provide for children, following a divorce, recovering from a financial or career setback, etc. Sadly, another subset of caregivers have been stuck in this cycle for years with an abusive parent and they just don’t know how to get away. Read more →