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5 Positive Effects of Long-term Caregiving

MomDaughterAfter decades of caregiving I’ve experienced some negative effects as noted in 5 Negative Effects of Long-term Caregiving. However, I've also experienced positive effects that continue to give me pleasure and enhance my life. I saved the positive aspects of caregiving for the second article because, having recently written about the ill effects on our health caused by negative thinking,  it seemed more authentic to me as a writer.  Also, as a person, when possible I like to concentrate on the positive. Below are a few of the many things that I feel I have gained, and still am gaining, from long-term caregiving.

Read full article on HealthCentral about the positive effects on the caregiver of long-term caregiving:

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“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Sleep Deprivation May Contribute to Alzheimer’s

Brain8A study published in JAMA Neurology reports that participants with evidence of preclinical Alzheimer's experienced worse sleep efficiency than those with no evidence of potential Alzheimer’s. One hundred forty five people between ages 45 and 75 took part in the study conducted by researchers at the Charles F. and Joanne Knight Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine. While none of the study participants had any cognitive concerns, once their spinal fluid was analyzed test results showed that about one-third of them were very likely to have Alzheimer's-linked Amyloid plaques in the brain. Amyloid plaques are generally considered to be a sign of preclinical Alzheimer's.

Read more on HealthCentral about how sleep deprivation may affect our Alzheimer's risk:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Dementia as a Disability: Mental Health Foundation (UK) Advocates for Inclusion

Brain5...For those with younger onset Alzheimer's disease (YOAD), the fact that brain disease would develop in someone who is not “old” makes the adjustment even harder. Many, in their 40s and 50s, are still raising children and are at the peaks of their careers. Younger onset Alzheimer’s, as well as other dementias that can strike people still in their prime, can be even more devastating than the traditionally developed dementia that presents symptoms in one’s older years. Considering that dementia at any age is devastating, it’s hard to place values on what is harder. However, the younger the person, the more years of normal life have been lost.

Read more on HealthCentral about how the UK is beginning to look at dementia:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


New Screening Methods for Alzheimer’s Disease Improving Diagnoses

DoctorPatientIn the not too distant past, being tested for Alzheimer’s disease was expensive, time consuming and too often resulted in a misdiagnosis. Recently developed methods of testing that are working their way toward mainstream care should help alleviate these concerns. These new methods are, or should become, less expensive, much faster and often more accurate than previous methods. The following slides provide a preview of some new tests for early Alzheimer’s detection that are making their way toward your doctor’s office.

View slideshow on HealthCentral about more new screening methods for improving Alzheimer's diagnosis:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Alzheimer's Sleep Issues Challenge Exhausted Caregivers

StressedManExhausted caregivers often say that one of the hardest things for them is that they can’t get quality sleep. Even caregivers who have loved ones outside of their homes can have problems since they are still on call day and night for frequent emergencies. However, it’s the Alzheimer’s caregivers who have the hardest time since Alzheimer’s disease can cause severe sleep disruption. Experts still aren’t sure about all of the reasons for the poor sleeping patterns of people with Alzheimer’s disease. Doctors feel that there may be some change in the brain, perhaps the same as with other aging people but more intense, that cause this distressing situation.

Read more on HealthCentral about exhausted caregivers:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Predicting Alzheimer’s: Biological Age Overrides Chronological Age

Research6...The question that travels hand in hand with these studies is who should start these drugs if they do prove to be effective? It’s not prudent to simply give the drugs to the whole aging population.We may soon have an answer to that question. A study that shows differences in biological aging vs. chronological aging could help us find a way to differentiate between those for whom early treatment should be considered and those who aren’t likely to require the drugs.

Read more on HealthCentral about the differences between biological age and chronological age:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders of Minding Our Elders e-mail Carol

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Alzheimer’s Risk Higher for Women: Why?

ComfortingIt’s been known for years that women are more at risk for Alzheimer’s disease than men.  Now there’s even more evidence of gender differences. A new study has found that among those who've been diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), women show a much faster rate of memory loss than men.

Read more on HealthCentral about why Alzheimer's is more prevalent in women than in men:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


People with Dementia Find Renewed Confidence While Playing in Orchestra

Violin1Alzheimer’s is a global issue that is on track to bankrupt worldwide health systems if a cure is not found. Therefore, funding for research is paramount, not just for those who have the disease but for future generations, as well. However, large numbers of the people who have Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia at this time are trying to make the point that it is equally important to put imagination, research and funding into how to care for those who already have this incurable disease.  

Read more on HealthCentral about how playing in an orchestra has helped people coping with Alzheimer's:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders of Minding Our Elders e-mail Carol

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling 


Poor Dental Hygiene Linked to Brain Tissue Degeneration

DentalCareThe strongest evidence to date that poor dental hygiene is linked to brain degeneration has emerged from a recent study at the University of Florida Dental College. While cardiologists have long known that the bacteria that causes gingivitis (gum disease) may enter the blood stream adding to  heart issues, there had been fewer studies to link Alzheimer’s or other dementia to oral health.

Read more on HealthCentral and oral hygiene and brain health:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Younger Onset Alzheimer’s Symptoms Surprisingly Different

Fog6When we think of Alzheimer’s symptoms we think of memory loss, yet this is not necessarily the case with younger onset Alzheimer's. Younger onset Alzheimer’s may present symptoms such as poor judgement and skewed thinking patterns before memory loss becomes evident. Researchers at University College London (UCL) studied 7,815 people who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. The point of the study was to determine if symptoms differed according to age of onset.

Read more on HealthCentral about differences in dementia onset symptoms when people are younger:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling