• 4 Places to live Happy & Healthy in Retirement

    Although you may not be at a place where you can predict what you will need to live happily and healthily in your golden years — thinking about these options now can help you make the right choice later. To avoid jumping into a decision you may ultimately regret, you have to take stock of your physical and mental health and your financial means. Figuring that out sounds a lot easier than it is, so here are a few ideas to help you decide which place will help make your retirement feel more meaningful and complete. Independent Living Facilities Many seniors enjoy spending time in communities with similar interests, ages,…

  • Not Just Memory Loss

    Dementia is so much more than memory loss. Forgetting names, places, and words is just the tip of the awful iceberg. Dementia affects memory, behavior, speech, and much more. Understanding Dementia is easier if we pause and think about a few things we know. Let’s examine a few facts. Dementia is a brain disorder. Most types of dementia get worse, but not better. There currently is no cure. There are many different types of Dementia. Parkinson’s, Lewy Body, Frontal Temporal, vascular dementia, and Alzheimer’s, to name a few. They can start in one area of the brain and progress to others doing irreversible damage as they migrate. Dementia causes the…

  • 12 Most Common Warning Signs of Dementia

    Before we begin, it’s important we understand what Dementia is, and what it is not. Dementia is a term referring to an inability of the brain to function properly. It affects all areas of life since our brains are our body’s control center. When the control center is damaged, “normal” functions become more difficult, even impossible. Dementia is a term encompassing many different diseases including Alzheimer’s, Vascular Dementia, Lewy Body Dementia, Parkinson’s Disease, Downs Syndrome, and many more. Dementia is NOT A NORMAL PART OF AGING. It is a disease. While there are many different warning signs of Dementia, the following are the most common symptoms. 1)    Memory loss or Mild…

  • 10 Things to STOP Doing

    Today I’m suggesting 10 things you should STOP DOING as a caregiver of a loved one with some form of Dementia. (Notice I said “suggest”. The choice is yours.) 1) STOP THE GUILT TRAIN. Our guilt and sense of obligation can imprison us.

  • What will my Doctor likely Do If I’m having Memory Problems?

    What can I expect my Doctor to do? Going to the doctor can be stressful, especially if you are fearful of the diagnosis. When you are experiencing memory concerns, we can be especially fearful and/or resistant to see the doctor at all. Being prepared and having an idea what to expect, reduces stress and anxiety. I suggest getting a notebook or taking notes on your phone before and during the doctor visit to record information and suggestions the doctor may offer. Information for you to gather in advance will include: complete list of medications along with strength and dosages list all supplements or natural herbs you take a list of…

  • 15 Ways to Deal with Anger

    The best way to deal with anger is to avoid it in the first place. We see a person react in a disagreeable manner but we have to remember, they aren't making a conscious choice to do so if they have any form of Dementia. They have lost the ability to control their emotions. As a result, we as caregivers, must try to control the environment which can cause outbursts. 1) Distract and divert attention away from the cause of anger. 2) Simplify things for them. ​ Talk slower and explain each step. Example: I'm turning on the shower. I will get it warm for you. Here's a washcloth with…

  • Here we go Loopty-Lou

    When your mom has Dementia with no short-term memory, and you are taking her somewhere, you plan ahead to minimize the repetitiveness. One day, my preparation for her doctor's visit included printing out four pictures of various family members for mom to look at while we waited. There is no need for more because she forgets what she's seen by the time she's on the following picture. She studied each picture, one at a time, and made the same comments every time. "Oh, look at this baby! Isn't she cute? Who's is she?" to which I'd reply, "Yes, she is adorable! That's Audrey; she's Ashley's little girl." and mom would…

  • 10 Early Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease

    1) Loss of sense of smell. This is one of the oddest, least-known, and often earliest signs of Parkinson's disease, but it almost always goes unrecognized until later. Patients say they were at a party and everyone was remarking on how strong a woman's perfume was, and they couldn't smell it. 2) Trouble sleeping. Neurologists stay on the alert for a sleep condition known as rapid-eye-movement behavior disorder (RBD), in which people essentially act out their dreams during REM sleep, the deepest stage of sleep. People with RBD may shout, kick, or grind their teeth. 3) Constipation and other bowel and bladder problems. One of the most common early signs…

  • Set Hammy Free!

    Consider my hamster, Hammy, creative name right? Hammy wants out of his cage more than anything. He looks at me begging with his big, brown, fur-trimmed eyes to puhleeeease let him out. He even makes little whining noises to sound pitiful, hoping to play on my sympathies so he can be released into the wilds of my living room. Hammy thinks if he can get out of his prison, be set free and allowed to roam wherever he wants, he'd be the happiest hamster ever. He doesn't understand why I won't let him out no matter how much he begs. He is oblivious to the danger that would most certainly beset him in…

  • 7 Stages of Alzheimer’s

    What do you do when your mom hand washes your paper plates and tosses your good silverware in the trash? Seem hard to believe? Not if you are a caregiver for a loved one with some form of Dementia. ​  Maybe you are at the beginning of this journey. Perhaps the doctor has just said those horrific words: Dementia, Alzheimer's, or Parkinson's Disease and you are still in shock. You may be wondering what treatments are available and what to expect. These diseases affect not only the person afflicted, but also those who are to become caregivers and their families. What exactly is Dementia and how widespread is it? The…

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