Resources

We have added a resource directory to our blog. We will be updating and adding more as time goes on. If there is an addition or information you would like us to include please feel free to make suggestions and we will do our best to accomodate your requests. We have also added a direct link to our Caregiver Support Chat. That link is available by clicking thr Caregiver Support Chat tab at the top of our page. We are updating our blog and adding lots of new info as well as articles. Thanks as always for your continued intrest and support!

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Caregiver Support Chat

We will be meeting in chat again on on Friday evening at 7:00 pm MST. Thanks to everyone who attended Tuesday. We are looking forward to meeting new people so come and join us!!

Could it be Alzheimer’s?

As we age a certain amount of memory loss is unavoidable,but at what point do you become concerned that your loved one ie experiencing something more serious than age related memory loss?

Memory loss that disrupts daily life is not normal and may be a sign of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Alzheimer’s is a fatal brain disease that causes a decline in memory,thinking,and reasoning skills which over time can become severe enough to affect work,relationships,social lives and hobbies.There is no cure for Alzheimer’s,but with treatment for the symptoms and the right services and support the lives of Alzheimer’s patients can be more tolerable and richer.

Some of the warning signs for Alzheimer’s can mimic normal signs of aging,but if you notice any of these signs in your loved one,please consult a doctor because there are treatments available that may help with the  behavioral and cognitive symptoms of Alzheimer’s.

Memory loss:Forgetting important dates or events,asking for the same information over and over.

Changes in judgement or decision making:Poor grooming habits,using poor judgement with money or possesions,giving large sums of money away.

Changes in mood:Becoming fearful,confused,depressed,anxious,may become easily upset when outside their comfort zone.

Trouble joining or following a conversation:May stop in the middle of a conversation and not know how to continue,problems finding the right word,calling things by the wrong name(calling a watch a hand clock),repeating themselves.

Trouble understanding visual images:Difficulty reading,judging distance ,or color contrast.

Confusion with time or place:Losing track of time,seasons and dates.May forget where they are and how they got there.May become lost while driving on familiar streets.

Difficulty completing familiar tasks:Can’t remember the rules to a favorite game,trouble following a familiar recipe or keeping track of monthly bills,may have difficulty concentrating or take much longer to do something than they did before.

Misplacing items in odd places:Putting the car keys in the freezer and forgetting how they got there.

If you are concerned that your loved one may have Alzheimer’s,please consult a doctor as he may order a series of tests to determine if in fact it is something serious.If  you are not satisfied with the doctors assesment,do not hesitate to get a second opinion as some doctors are dismissive of Alzheimer’s symptoms.Your loved one deserves a thorough exam and proper diagnosis as Alzheimer’s can go on for a long time and you will need to work closely with your doctor so finding a caring healthcare professional that you trust is very important.

Choosing the right nursing home

Lakeview Care Home. One of two modern care hom...

Image via Wikipedia

Each year many of us are faced with the decision on what to do when Mom or Dad can no longer care for themselves.Making that decision can be a gut wrenching process as we love our parents and want to be there for them in their hour of need.In some cases home care is not an option due to the level of care that may be needed,available caregivers-usually other family members,lack of extra bedrooms and the stress involved for the entire family in caring for an eldery person in the home.

Talk to your family,friends(many of them may have had to make that decision as well)and your parents’ physician as all will have helpful advice to give that may make your decision easier.

If you choose a nursing home there are many factors to consider:

First,be aware of the level of care your Mom or Dad may need and what their mental status is.Some nursing homes deal exclusively in Alzheimer’s and Dementia-it may be helpful to speak with their primary physician in reguards to this as there are tests that can determine what level of care is needed.

Second,once level of care has been determined,make a list of all available care centers in your area that meet your parents’ needs and make plans to visit each one.This is very important as not all nursing homes have the same quality of care.It can be quite time consuming to choose the right home,but in the long run it is worth it because you can rest assured that your Mom or Dad is recieving the level of care that they both need and deserve.

I would suggest a surprise visit rather than making an appointment because you wont get the guided tour and will get to see what you need to see rather than what someone wants you to see.

In my next post I will let you know what to look for in a quality nursing home.