Support Feed

...Since I’m a dementia caregiver with my own history, I quite naturally wanted to understand the thoughts of other dementia caregivers on this issue, so I asked several of them for input. As one would expect, responses to my question varied, though not one of those who responded mentioned Valentine’s Day itself as being a trigger for showing love. Here is a sampling of caregiver responses: Read more →


You may go home from the nursing home where your spouse lives and cry from the loneliness that resides in your heart. Or, if your spouse is still home, you may continue throughout the day in the vein of celebration even though, realistically, you are celebrating alone. Still, think of the alternative. Read more →


Dear Carol: My friend is struggling to convince her father, who lives across the country, that he needs help caring for his 86-year-old wife who’s disabled from a stroke. Her dad is somewhat younger than her mom, but he has his own health problems. She knows that he’s overwhelmed with caregiving but he won't hire anyone to help. My friend asked for my opinion and I’m stumped. She says that her dad has always been stubborn and she doesn’t know what to do about his situation because she is too far away to be hands-on. – JY Read more →


Thankfully, during this past decade, because of technology along with other awareness efforts, caregiver support has exploded with resources and professional help. Still, caregivers long to connect personally with each other and share, on an intimate level, what they’ve learned. The stories below are examples of that sharing spirit. Caregiving will change your life both positively and negatively, but these caregivers make it clear that you don’t have to go through it alone. Read more →


According to the National Sleep Foundation, changes to our sleep patterns are a part of the normal aging process. The foundation states that as people age, they tend to have a harder time falling asleep and more trouble staying asleep than when they were younger. Knowing this, and knowing about the common thinking that adults need less sleep as they age, HealthCentral asked Dr. Martha Cortes some questions via email about aging and sleep. Read more →


Dear Carol: My mother has mid-stage dementia, as a mixture of Alzheimer’s and vascular. Dad is taking care of her, and overall it’s going okay as long as I go over to their apartment each day to help with baths, run errands, and accompany them to medical appointments. What’s troubling is that last week Mom fell against a cupboard corner and tore a gash in her shoulder. Read more →


...Because of the lack of clarity over the years about whether or not people with dementia felt as much pain as those who did not have a cognitive disorder, other researchers have been looking at the concept. Ruth Defrin, PhD, of University of Tel Aviv calls learning about the pain levels of those who cannot speak for themselves “an imperative ethical goal. Read more →


A technique using a yoga pose while mediating was shown by modern methods to be as effective as memory enhancement training (MET). The results of the practices were scientifically proven by using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. The UCLA researchers recruited a group of 29 middle-aged and older adults who were shown to have MCI. The progress of these study participants was tracked with brain scans. Read more →


According to the Healthy Aging Program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) and the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD), it is estimated that 20 percent of people age 55 years or older experience some type of mental health concern. These agencies say that the most common conditions include anxiety, severe cognitive impairment, and mood disorders such as depression or bipolar disorder. Mental health issues are often implicated as a factor in cases of suicide. Read more →


Dysphagia is a swallowing impairment that can occur after someone has a stroke or any type of brain injury. Dysphagia is also a concern with Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), oral cancer, and many other injuries and diseases. However, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), dysphagia is also a growing concern in Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). The NIH says that dysphagia “frequently leads to aspiration pneumonia, a common cause of death in this population, particularly in the later stage of AD.” Read more →