Tips for Seniors Feed

Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover: Aging Bodies Often House Strong Minds

ElderlyManCaneAdult children are right to be aware of their parents’ physical and mental changes since there’s no way to stop the aging process. However, as a columnist on caregiving and a forum moderator, I’m seeing something very scary happening far too often. Ageism is overtaking common sense and respect. The fact that someone is over 65, and perhaps has arthritis and controlled high blood pressure, does not make this person cognitively unstable.

Read more on HealthCentral about strong minds in older bodies:

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


Where Is the Line Between Caregiver Stress and Burnout?

Stress3Every person who becomes a caregiver will have unique personality traits, yet we nearly always share certain feelings and experiences as we travel a road similar to one another. That’s one reason that caregivers often turn to other caregivers for support. It’s a version of the adage that we need to walk in another’s shoes in order to truly understand what they feel. One of those shared experiences is a certain amount of stress. Some personalities cope with the ever changing, nearly always challenging, business of caring for another adult with health issues better than others.

Read more on HealthCentral about the difference between caregiver stress and burnout:

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


Reminiscing Powerful “Drug” for People with Dementia

Caregiving4I love stories. When I was a teenager, I’d encourage my grandparents to relate stories of their young years struggling to survive on the wind-swept prairie. When I grew older, I was fascinated by the stories my parents and in-laws told of their early years of growing up during the Great Depression. Little did I know at the time that peoples’ stories would become the springboard for my life’s work. Now there is mounting evidence that encouraging our elders to reminisce about their past is therapeutic as well as enjoyable.

Read more on HealthCentral about how reminiscing can help people with 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


Convincing Incontinent Elder to Wear Protection Can Be a Challenge

Caregiver_cropped_hands_2Our parents changed our diapers when we were babies. As we grew into toddlers we were “potty trained,” and from that time on we were expected to control our bodily functions. Is it any wonder that elders who have been rendered incontinent by a medical problem or disease often deny their incontinence and refuse, even in the face of evidence, to wear protection? They equate incontinence protection with diapers and diapers with babies. They feel humiliated. Wouldn’t they feel more humiliated smelling of urine or feces, you ask? Logically, yes.

Read more on HealthCentral about convincing elder to wear protection:

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


Kegel Exercises: Prevent or Improve Urinary Incontinence Problems

Caregiver6“It has happened to all of us: we cough, sneeze or laugh and suddenly we feel that unique sensation of a bladder leak. The makers of incontinence products would have us believe that small bladder leakages are normal and manageable. This may be, but most women feel embarrassed and uncomfortable if they experience leakage, and no one enjoys planning trips around the closest bathroom locations. So, is there anything that can be done to prevent or manage urinary incontinence? Absolutely!”

Read full article on Agingcare about how Kegeling can improve incontinence issues:

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


Bilingual People May be Better Protected Against Alzheimer's

Brain7The first elder for whom I became a primary caregiver was my neighbor, Joe. He was born of Norwegian immigrant parents who spoke Norwegian at home. As a result, Joe needed to repeat first grade because he spent his first year in school learning English. While Joe went on to become a well educated engineer who spoke English with no Norwegian accent, in his later years he did occasionally talk about the challenges he faced as a Norwegian speaking child. Joe’s experience of growing up in a home where a language other than English was hardly unusual since, historically, the U.S. has been populated by immigrants. What’s surprising to me is that when Joe was young, educators thought that he and others like him would be at an educational disadvantage.

Read more on Healthcentral about how bilingual people are less at risk for 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


Alzheimer’s Development Predicted Through Changes in Gait

DoctorElderlyManWhen you are stuck behind an older woman at the supermarket, do you get impatient at her slow pace? Maybe she simply has all the time in the world and no longer must rush through each day as though she needs to put out a fire. Or maybe she has arthritis or another physical illness that is slowing her down. There’s nothing wrong with being more cautious about movements and slowing a bit as we age. However, for some people, a slow gait, particularly an uneven gait, could be a sign of brain disease such as Alzheimer’s.

Read more on HealthCentral about how change in gait can be a predictor 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


Early Detection of Alzheimer’s May Curtail Symptoms

FacialExpressionsSince there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease at this time, many people with some memory issues use that as an excuse to avoid seeing a diagnostician. They really don’t want to hear what they fear will be a diagnosis of AD. Given the stigma that still accompanies many brain diseases, that’s understandable. However, a new study has shown that early detection and treatment can be beneficial by curtailing symptoms, or at least managing them more efficiently.

Read more on HealthCentral about how early detection of Alzheimer's can be beneficial:

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 Potentially Reversible Conditions that Can Mimic Dementia

ComfortingWhen dementia symptoms appear, it’s natural to become frightened and jump to the conclusion that the person affected has an incurable form of dementia. Rather than looking at the symptoms with panic, it’s far better to try to remain calm and have a specialist make the determination. Yes, many forms of dementia are incurable, but there are conditions that can present symptoms that seem like dementia but are reversible.

View slideshow on HealthCentral about reversible conditions that can mimic 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


Alzheimer’s Disease Impairs Insulin Signaling in Brain, Increases Diabetes Risk

Exercise6According to new research, the long-held theory that diabetes may cause Alzheimer’s could prove to be the reverse, at least in some cases. Scientists from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai published, in the journal Alzheimer’s and Dementia, their study results that suggest that Alzheimer’s disease (AD) impairs insulin signaling in the area of the brain that is responsible for regulating metabolism. This, in turn, makes a person with Alzheimer’s disease more susceptible to diabetes. Until now, an abundance of studies, including one that lasted nine years, concluded that diabetes significantly increased a person’s risk of developing      Alzheimer’s disease, while avoiding diabetes or keeping it under control lowered one’s risk.

Read more on HealthCentral about diabetes risk for people who have 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