• Crowds and dementia can be tough

    Successfully navigating large gatherings with a loved one who has dementia, can be difficult. We can take steps to make the visit less stressful and thereby happier for all involved. I'm not gonna sugarcoat it or pretend I have it all under control. For one thing, many of you have been with me long enough to know that just isn't true. I try, (really hard,) but sometimes I still blow it. Maybe you can relate? Mom has vascular dementia, so our large family gatherings are challenging. I refuse to leave her out of them. I want her to be with family as much as possible, even when she no longer…

  • Who has time to Relax?

    What goes through your mind when someone says "you just need to relax"? My guess is you are not instantly deep breathing and calming down, correct? If anything, you are more worked up now than before they offered their "helpful" opinion. (I need a designated sarcasm font! lol) The truth is, they are correct. We do need to learn to unwind. Please stick with me; I'm not finished. While their sentiment may be right, it is not helpful. We know stress is bad for our minds and bodies when it's prolonged, and caregiving definitely comes with a lot of stress. But what can we realistically do? We can't run away,…

  • 5 Stress Relievers

    Prioritize Take a good look at your To-Do List. On one sheet of paper, write items you MUST accomplish; on another, list things that would be nice to achieve. What I'm going to say next is hard to hear, but it's VERY IMPORTANT to reducing your stress levels. Are you ready? Throw away the second page. You don't need the pressure of having it on your To-Do List when it's not essential. When you have some free time, you can think about those things. If you can't bear throwing it away, put it in a drawer out of sight. (I understand.) Now look at the items on your smaller To-Do…

  • 10 Reasons You Should Be Coloring

    Did you wake up one morning and say to yourself, "I think I'd like to be a caregiver cause that sounds like fun!" Yeah, I didn't think so. Most of us became caregivers because our loved ones needed help. Not necessarily because we WANTED to, it typically was because they needed us to. If you have a different reason or situation, let me know. Regardless of how or why, here we are, caring for another human. We're all doing the best we can in a position few feel qualified to do. Many of us did or are still doing a pretty good job of raising our kids, but caregiving for…

  • 8 Ways to Help Your Loved One Sleep

    8 Ways to Help Your Loved One Sleep Just as sleep is essential for us, the caregivers, it is also essential to our care receivers. Their brain needs time to process, reset, clear, and rest more than ours. This is mainly due to the fact that their brain has to work 3-4 times harder than ours. We remember where we are, who we are, who others are, and more that they do not.   Following are 8 things to try to assist in the sleep process:   Cut down on caffeine (coffee, tea, chocolate, cola)  and nicotine during the day, but especially several hours before bedtime. Caffeine can have a pronounced…

  • 7 Natural Ways To Calm Anxiety

    According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, over 18% of the American population struggles with some form of anxiety at any given time. Coping with anxiety can be complicated, especially since there’s no single treatment that works for everyone. So, let’s talk about 7 completely natural ways that you can calm your anxiety today. 1. Meditation & Deep Breathing Anxiety attacks and persistent anxiety typically come with the same few symptoms. You may notice that your heart rate is twice as fast as normal, that your blood pressure has skyrocketed, and that thoughts are racing through your mind at lightning speed. Meditation and deep breathing techniques can help…

  • 4 WAYS TO STAY GROUNDED

    The world that we are living in today is anything but peaceful and predictable. It seems that every day there is some new tragedy or cause for fear that demands every ounce of our attention.    These incidences come from every direction and in all shapes and sizes. Whether a personal issue arises that completely disrupts your peace of mind but seems to only affect you personally or a global event transpires that uproots the happiness and joy of millions of people simultaneously, (ever hear of COVID–19?) our world can be a very uneasy place to exist.    With everything going on around you, maintaining a sense of security and…

  • 7 Ways to Reduce Stress during Quarantine

    1. Limit News Consumption Know the facts, but don’t overwatch the news and create more anxiety. 2. Practice Calming TechniquesWhether this is reading, watching your favorite TV show, or taking a bath, be sure to take time for yourself to relax.  3. Move Your Body Exercise is a great way to release tension in your body and take your mind off of things for a while.  4. Connect With Loved OnesSchedule a time to call, text, email, or video call a friend or family member.  5. Find Activities That Bring Joy Whether that’s listening to music or finishing a puzzle, find an activity that you enjoy. There are many online options for different activities,…

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