Validation Therapy when dealing with Alzheimer’s and dementia

This type of interaction is not being used enough when dealing with a person living with dementia, many people may not understand what this means, or how is it going to help with care. If you have attended one of my workshops or speaking engagements you may have heard me talking about “Validation Therapy” when dealing with a person living with Alzheimer’s and dementia. I do get some strange looks, some people believe that they are lying to their person, that they are not telling them the truth, this is not true.

When we learn this technique we can restore confidence, dignity and we will also gain some empathy for this person, but most of all we will be taking the time to listen to them, this will tell us where they are and in what time frame they are referring to. Validation will also help you in when redirection is needed especially in the later afternoon when “sundowning” may be an issue for your loved one.
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You can learn from the behavior of your loved one with dementia

Throughout the disease process of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, your loved one will lose the ability to understand simple instructions, the ability to reason or undertake any logical process, and sometimes the ability to speak. My husband Albert lost his language skills very early in the process, and this left me feeling confused, adrift, and alone. How are we supposed to know or respond to what they need when they cannot tell us what they want? Continue reading

Alzheimer’s is not caused by aging!

The other day I read an article about health and longevity that contained the assertion, “The single biggest cause of Alzheimer’s Disease is aging.” This is absolutely wrong, and it represents a logical fallacy that we see all too often among so-called experts and suppliers of products and therapies that they claim will reverse, slow, or even cure dementia. Continue reading

When coping with dementia, don’t become a ‘Secondary Patient’

According to the National Institute of Health, for individuals over 65 years of age who are in family care, the average age of the caregiver is 63!
When we start families, we are usually in our late teens or early 20s, and we bring a child into the world whom we know will require around-the-clock attention for more than a year. But we are young, we are strong, and we have energy. Continue reading

Hernando County, a liability and an asset

For the State of Florida as a whole, 17% of the population is over the age of 65. In Hernando County, 31% is over 65; which is approaching twice the statewide average. The Alzheimer’s Association tells us that among people over the age of 65, one in ten is living with the disease. With a population of 178,500 (2015), it does not take higher mathematics to project that about 5,500 people in Hernando County are living with Alzheimer’s. Continue reading

Identifying possible signs of dementia

Memory loss is a key and conspicuous symptom of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, but dementia causes many other changes that can result in dysfunctional behavior.
Forgetting things does not mean you have dementia. It happens to all of us. “Where are my keys?” “Where did I leave my coat?” Relax, you very likely don’t have a problem. Continue reading

Dangerous Days for people with Dementia

While Alzheimer’s is most commonly associated with memory loss, in fact there are many other symptoms attached to this disease and other forms of dementia. One of these symptoms is an inability to recognize when one is hungry or thirsty. Another is the tendency to wander. These two combined can bring tragic results, especially now, during the hottest months of the year.
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