Spirituality Feed

Long-term Caregiving May Shorten Life Up To Eight Years

StressA study by Ohio State University in conjunction with the National Institute on Aging has shown that adult children caring for their parents, as well as parents caring for chronically ill children, may have their life span shortened by four to eight years.   For this study, Ohio State University’s Ronald Glaser, head of OSU’s Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research, and Jan Kiecolt-Glaser, a professor of psychology and psychiatry at OSU, teamed with Nan-ping Weng and his research group from the National Institute on Aging. 

Read more on HealthCentral about how long term caregiving can shorten the life span of a caregiver:

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


To Live and Die with Serenity and Peace Try Forgiveness

MotherdaughterForgiveness nearly always changes lives for the better, even if one of those lives is about to end. Whether we are the forgiver or the person being forgiven, the blessings flow both ways. To me, forgiving one another for being flawed human beings is an important key to a reasonably serene life. However, this mutual understanding is not always easy to come by.

Read more on Agingcare about forgiveness as a way toward serenity and peace:

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


Celebrate National Healthcare Decisions Day by Ordering Amazon Best Seller "Wishes to Die For"

WishesToDieForBestSellerLast year, I reviewed the first edition of "Wishes to Die For" for my newspaper column. The review can be read below.   I was later asked to write the foreword for this second edition. It was an honor to do so because I still consider this the best book available for people who want to learn how to take control of living until they die.  - Carol

“Code Blue!: A voice cries out in the Emergency Department. “Is there a doctor who can ‘tube’ a patient in Cardiac Cath Lab?”

These beginning lines of “Wishes To Die For: Expanding Upon Doing Less in Advanced Care Directives” by Kevin J. Haselhorst, MD prepare the reader for an adventure in self-examination...

Read full article on Inforum about mapping about your healthcare decisions: 

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


Negative Thinking: Could Your Life Have Been Happier?

... Brain9Hospice has found that many people wish at the end of life that they had allowed themselves to be happier. Happy doesn’t necessarily mean we are happy with every circumstance. It simply means accepting where we are in life and making the best of it. 

Read more on HealthCentral about the effects of negative thinking on our 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


Hospice Care about Re-Focusing Priorities, Not Giving Up

HandsComfortOur culture is steeped in language that makes accepting the terminal diagnosis of ourselves or a loved one more difficult to accept than it needs to be. Doctors say, “I’m sorry, there’s nothing more we can do. You might want to look into hospice care.” Patients tell their doctors that they want “aggressive treatment,” until there is nothing else that can be done, then they will go on hospice care.   The crux of these conversations is that medicine will do everything possible and then when you give up you will go on hospice care. 

Read more on HealthCentral about hospice care as a positive 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


How Caregivers Go About Rebuilding Their Lives After Caregiving Ends

Road...Many of us start our caregiving career by assisting an elder in his or her home, or we have a spouse who declines and we become the default caregiver in our own home. This care expands to a point where we need some type of respite, often in the form of in-home care agency help. Eventually, the move to assisted living or even a nursing home may become necessary for everyone's health and wellbeing. Whatever happens, we remain caregivers. Many of us continue to see our care receiver daily. Most of us continue to be involved as advocates and support throughout the time of need. When our loving attention and care is no longer needed, we can, indeed, feel lost.

Read more on Agingcare about rebuilding life after the death of your loved one:

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


Looking for Guidance on Alzheimer's Group Leadership? Here's Your Guide

LeadersguideNote: I've been alerted to what looks to be an exceptionally helpful tool for Alzheimer's caregivers and those who help these caregivers. The "Leader's Guide for Season's of Caregiving" is a product of UsAgainstAlzhiemer's Clergy Network. For full disclosure, I must say that I am honored to be a co-moderator for UsAgainstAlzheimer's. It is volunteer position. I'm passing on this information because I truly believe that the book has the potential to help many readers. Follow through if you feel that the "Leader's Guide" could help you. - Carol

The Leader's Guide for Seasons of Caring, provides structure and guidance for a 10-week support group based on the Seasons of Caring: Meditations for Alzheimer’s and Dementia Caregivers. It touches on universal themes, such as personal stories, guilt, self-care and loss with an interfaith approach.

The "Leader's Guide" includes simple, yet powerful guidance for structuring and leading a support group in a variety of community and faith settings. The guide was written by Dr. Richard Morgan, a distinguished founder of UsAgainstAlzheimer's Clergy Network, which supported publication of this volume.  This is an important resource for families who are facing Alzheimer's, and those working to support them. 

For more information on the Leader's Guide for Season's of Caring: 

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


Andropause: A Topic Men Tend to Avoid

ManAndDoctorWho would have thought that my search for an expert to discuss the fact that men change hormonally as they age would elicit such profound silence? This had me worried for a time, since I truly wanted to have a man handle the very masculine topic of andropause. However, eventually one brave man, Dennis Marasco, came to my rescue. With humor and wisdom, Dennis tells us about andropause, explaining in the process why the answer to my general inquiry was so underwhelming.

Read more on Agingcare about andropause (male menopause): 

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 


How Long-term Caregiving Has Changed Your Life

020de936-88fe-4604-98b5-80be46c60196_200x200Most caregivers go into caregiving mode with full hearts and wonderful intentions. They rarely stop to think, "Hmm, this could go on for years. I'd better plan it out. If I move to part-time at work, have more child care and spend mornings caring for my parents' needs, it will be difficult, but possible. If I continue to work full time, I'll have more for retirement, but I can't do it all. I have to plan this out."

Read more on Agingcare about how caregiving can change your life:

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


Fall Prevention and Emotional Comfort Difficult but Important Balance

WalkerDear Carol: My wife has Parkinson's disease along with mixed dementia. She's still home with me but it's getting to be a challenge. The hardest part is preventing falls. She uses a walker. I settle her into her electric recliner and tell her to let me know when she wants to get up but she'll still try to stand alone. She can work the chair to sit upright and then she pulls herself up by one end of her walker which often tips to the side. She also will get out of bed without waiting for me to help. So far she hasn't hurt herself when she's fallen, but it's only a matter of time. She gets very upset over any type of restraining device. I don't know what to do.—Sam

Read more on Inforum about fall prevention and dignity:

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