Nursing Home Feed

Visiting Plans for Loved One with Alzheimer's Must be Adjustable

Comfort8Dear Carol: Mom has had dementia for several years. I moved her to my house for about six months but she was extremely unhappy living there. I then moved her back to her home and hired help. That was worse. She wouldn’t get out of bed, she fought the caregivers and she wouldn’t eat. Finally, I gave up and moved her into the memory unit of a nearby assisted living center. Now, she’s up and around every day. She eats well and she is reasonably happy. The problem is that when I visit her she begs me to take her home. The staff has told me that she is doing well and this is just a normal reaction for someone with AD. They said, very kindly, that it may be better if I don’t visit quite so often. I feel guilty if I don’t visit daily but I can see their point. I read your column every week and you advocate visiting our parents often. Is it bad if I cut back and visit just once or twice a week? PR

Read more about how to adjust visiting our loved ones to their needs:

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What New Caregivers Can Expect as Caregiving Escalates

HairFamily caregivers generally earn their job title in one of two ways. The first is what I call the "sneak up mode." The second is "crisis mode." For me, caregiving began with an elderly neighbor who needed some assistance. This "assistance" turned into a five-year stint of elder care, closely followed by the ever increasing needs of six of my own family members.

Read more on Agingcare about how new caregivers must learn to adjust:

Christmas Gift for your Elders -  Peace of Mind for You:  Simple Smart Phone with Large Screen, Jitterbug flip phone, Urgent Response Device    For Help CALL:  1-866-222-0703

Support caregivers this Christmas by giving them copies  of Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories:


Tips for Visiting Elders at Home or In a Facility

VisitingLoneliness can be a plague for the elderly and ill. Yet visiting with someone who doesn’t feel well, and may have limited cognition, can be tricky. Some nervousness or reluctance is natural, but a few considerations can help to make things go smoothly.

View slide show on HealthCentral to learn some tips about visiting elders in a facility:

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


Changing Terminology Can Make Accepting End-Of-Life Decisions Easier

DeathDear Carol: My family is having a serious disagreement over signing papers for our mom who has just entered a nursing home. I have Power Of Attorney and am favor of signing a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) form for Mom. She has always told us she didn’t want to linger when her time came. While she is going into the nursing home for physical, she is showing some signs of early stage dementia so it’s important that we get this done. My brother and sister both think that a DNR is cruel and that it’s like killing Mom. They think that everything should be done to keep her alive as long as possible. Her POA even states that she doesn’t want to be kept alive at all cost. Because of this, I think I can push through the DNR, but I feel bad because my siblings are upset. I know that they don’t want to see Mom suffer unnecessarily but they feel guilty taking this formal step. How do I get through to them that there’s a point where people allowed to go? CD

Read more about Allow Natural Death on Inforum:

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


6 Tips To Help Modify Financial Drain on Alzheimer's Families

MoneyAccording to the national Alzheimer’s Association, in 2013, 15.5 million family and friends provided 17.7 billion hours of unpaid care to those with Alzheimer's and other dementias.  Also, Alzheimer's and dementia caregivers had $9.3 billion in additional health care costs of their own in the same year. Nearly 60 percent of Alzheimer's and dementia caregivers rate the emotional stress of caregiving as high or very high, and more than one-third report symptoms of depression. Remember, this is just the cost for caregivers.

Read more on HealthCentral about ways to modify the financial drain of 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


Are Frequent Family Visits Disrupting for Elder in a Facility?

NursinghomeDear Carol: I’ve cared for my wife who has dementia for several years but now she’s begun wandering and needs constant supervision. Our kids think that both she and I are both better off if we place her in a nursing home, so we are on two waiting lists. One of the homes that we're considering has a rule that the family isn’t supposed to visit for the first two weeks after the person is admitted, and after that visits should be infrequent. They say that family visits disrupt the routine that they are trying to put into place for the elder and that seeing family members simply confuses them. The other home welcomes visits from the start, saying that while they hope that the family feels comfortable leaving their loved one in their care, they like to have families help with getting the person settled and as comfortable as possible. I hate the idea of leaving my wife in a new place and not being with her to help her settle in, but I want what is best for her. CF

Read full article on Inforum about visiting rules and what is best:

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


What to Bring When Moving Into a Nursing Home: A Complete Checklist

MovingMost of us dread the thought of moving a loved one into a skilled nursing facility, and this sentiment doesn’t change for those who are fortunate enough to have a selection of stellar facilities to choose from. We know that we are giving up a certain amount of direct oversight, which can be hard even though we are well aware of our limitations as individual caregivers. We also know deep down that this move is an admission that a loved one has passed a certain point in their health where returning home or resuming even a few aspects of self-care is no longer a possibility. In other words, this transition is a direct dose of reality.

Read the full article on Agingcare for a complete checklist to help with moving to a nursing home:

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


Aging in Place or Assisted Living: It’s About Choices

FarmAccording to an AARP survey, the vast majority of boomers have stated that they want to stay in their current homes rather than move to another setting for their later years. This attitude has been the springboard for many aging in place advocates as well as businesses like contractors and high tech companies. It’s not hard to understand why 60-year-olds would say that they want to remain in their home for life rather than move to assisted living or a nursing home. These are generally people who are relatively healthy and feel that they can hire help for whatever they need down the road.

Read more on HealthCentral about choosing between staying in the home or moving to a care facility:

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


Granddaughter’s Caregiving Neglects Self, Creates Dilemma

GrandfatherGrandaughterDear Carol: I grew up with my grandparents because my parents were killed in a car accident and they both loved me a lot. My grandmother died seven years ago when I was 23. I’d been on my own for a few years, but I moved back in with grandpa after he had a stroke. Things have gone fairly well with me working part time jobs and spending a lot of time with him. Lately, though, his memory has gotten very bad and he’s become stubborn about taking his medication, which he was always good about before. He’s also having more trouble getting around. I’ve finally started a good job with prospects for a future, but I can’t leave grandpa alone for long. My friends, as well as grandpa’s friends, tell me that he needs to go to a nursing home. They think it’s better for both of us but I feel like I should stay and take care of him like he took care of me. If I stay, I can’t take the full time job which I really want. I’m so confused. What do you think I should do? TK

Read full article about young caregiver on Inforum:

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


Convincing Your Ailing Parent to Move to Assisted Living

Comfort8Conventional wisdom says that we all want to stay in our own homes for as long as we can. That is likely how most of our elders feel; however it's not always in their best interest to do so. How do we talk with them about the realities and dangers of staying at home once their health is failing, and how do we convince them that a move to an assisted living center could be a very good – and positive option?

Read more on Agingcare about convincing an ailing parent that assisted living may be a good move:

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