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Short Valentine's Stories Needed for Dementia Spouses' Valentine's Day (or Anniversary) Celebrations

LoveI've been through many Valentine's Day celebrations with my parents where I tried my best to help them carry on their past traditions. It was grueling for me and only somewhat satisfactory for them, but I felt that it must be done. I'm now collecting a few stories for publication in an article that I'm writing on Valentine's Day celebrations. For this, I'd like to hear from spouses who try to carry on the Valentines Day (or anniversary or any day celebrating their love) traditions. I'd also like to hear from someone who feels that it's best to skip marking that day and when or why they made that understandable decision. 

Please send stories via the www.mindingourelders.com "contact" box, or message me on Facebook or Twitter (@mindingourelder). I'm looking for little vignettes of around 100 words. I want to credit you so please give the name as you'd like to be credited. The state or province where you live would also be nice.

Whenever possible, I like to share your stories with a huge readership. This will be an article for HealthCentral.com so your stories will help a lot of people.

Thanks to all of my dedicated readers, caregivers, seniors, spouses and loved ones.

Blessings,

Carol

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


Respect Your Elders' Need for Independence

BicycleRiskDignity and identity are often tied to independence. As aging issues eat away at our loved ones' ability to follow through on tasks that they always loved, the feeling that life is worth living can fade as well. Our task as a caregiver is to encourage activities that contribute to our loved ones' feelings of self-worth while watching for safety concerns. If, as a caregiver, you are in doubt, it's generally best to err on the side of encouraging more independence rather than less.

Read more on Agingcare about honoring your elders' need to be independent:

Safety 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:


Caregiver Anxiety Can Bleed Over to Care Receiver

Stress_man_hand_238162If a caregiver is anxious because of job stress, he or she likely takes that anxiety home in some form and transfers some of it to the person they are caring for. This is not intentional, but even body language can transfer anxiety. The person being cared for picks up on the anxiety of the caregiver. His or her anxiety may stem from not knowing what is causing the person caring for them to be stressed, so they blame themselves. Or they may just absorb the feeling of generalized anxiety that radiates from the caregiver.

Read full article on Agingcare about how caregiver anxiety can bleed be contagious:

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. ORDER EARLY before supplies run out.


The Loneliness that Often Comes with Aging Can be Managed

Depression2As I watched my 90-year old grandparents grieve the loss of many friends. I had to wonder how much fun it is to be the last one standing. My parents faced much the same situation. Mom, who once loved getting Christmas cards, found that not only did the number of cards she received dwindle, the ones that she did get often contained sad news of death or disease. As she and many other older folks have said, "aging isn't for sissies."

Read more on Agingcare about how to help manage loneliness in your elderly loved ones:

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. ORDER EARLY before supplies run out.


Defining Our Role as Family Caregiver Can be a Process

Caregiverstress3Defining the point in time when a caring child or a loving spouse crosses the threshold into being a caregiver isn't easy. That point is different for everyone. Some people will deny the caregiving label entirely because they feel that they are simply doing what a good adult child or spouse is supposed to do. Others will grab onto their new title as soon as they are asked to help unscrew a bottle cap because Mom's arthritic hands make opening certain containers difficult. The point is, how important is defining your role as a caregiver to you, and when is the time to do so?

Read more on Agingcare about the difficulties of defining our role as caregiver: 

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 to Beat the Holiday Blues

Christmas-bauble-10056928When store employees wish us "Merry Christmas!" we smile back and return the greeting. When acquaintances wave and shout "Happy Holidays!" across a parking lot we wave back with good wishes. When we take part in our work holiday celebrations we put on our happy face. Yet many of us don't feel merry or happy during this time of celebration. Caregivers, especially, may be even less likely than others to be looking forward to all of the hoopla associated with the expected happy holidays. Some of us dread even thinking about it. How do we beat this feeling of holiday blues so that we can get through the next few weeks?

Read full article on Agingcare about beating the holiday blues:

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. ORDER EARLY before supplies run out.


Long-term Testing May Speed Early Treatment of Alzheimer’s with Medication

OldermanTHinkStockScientists at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Cognitive and Neural Systems have found evidence that long-term testing starting well before any signs of Alzheimer’s symptoms  are evident could be a valuable tool in detecting which people will need intervention with therapeutic drugs that are now in clinical trials. This type of intervention could possibly halt or even reverse cognitive damage while the patient is still symptom-free. The long-term testing would be done in conjunction with brain scans.

                         Read more on HealthCentral about how this human based test can speed the diagnosis of AD:

                                 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


Why People Living with Alzheimer’s May React with Anger

Family3Frustrated caregivers often wonder why their loved one who is living with Alzheimer’s sometimes reacts with anger as the caregivers attempt to help. Understanding why a spouse, parent or grandparent behaves this way can help the caregiver limit these stressful, frustrating times. To do that, the caregivers must understand life from the point of view of their loved one’s impaired mind.

Read more on HealthCentral about why people with dementia may react with anger:

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


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 Lack of Hygiene and Over Sleeping a Sign of Dementia?

Depression2Dear Carol: My father, who is 83, refuses to shower or bathe. Mom can’t budge him. He used to be very clean. He was also interested in fixing things around the house and he loved yard work and playing poker with friends. Over the last months he’s completely changed. All he wants to do is sleep in front of the TV.  He won’t even put on fresh clothes in the morning unless Mom snatches his dirty clothes and puts them in the wash before he goes to bed. Mom says he’s also careless about taking his blood pressure medications. His memory seems normal for his age, which is to say that he does forget things occasionally but no more than Mom or others of his age. We dance around the Alzheimer’s word, probably because we’re scared that this is what is wrong. What do you think? VK

Read more on Inform about potential causes for lack of hygiene with elderly spouses or parents:

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