Care requires Trust before Task

Undoubtedly, the most difficult kind of senior care is when our loved one is living with dementia. Changes in the brain that destroy their physical and cognitive abilities, but leave their emotions intact, create unique and difficult challenges that cannot be overcome with conversation, logic, or explanation, which we commonly use when caring for seniors not living with dementia. Continue readingCare requires Trust before Task”

Understanding the Care Partner Relationship

Often, when I begin a consulting or training relationship with a care partner for an individual living with dementia – whether that care partner is a family member or a paid professional – I confront an essential misunderstanding in what it is we hope to accomplish. This happens when people call upon my services with the belief that I am going to teach them some tricks that will make their loved one living with dementia behave as they want them to. Continue readingUnderstanding the Care Partner Relationship”

The Care Partner as Student

Recently, my partner Ed and I traveled to North Carolina to visit Soltys Place, a dementia day care center run by Teepa Snow, the founder of the Positive Approach to Care, which provides the core training for the philosophy and techniques of my company, Coping with Dementia LLC. We asked if it was permissible to take photographs, and Teepa replied, “Sure, all of our dementia teachers and their families have signed a photo consent agreement.” Continue readingThe Care Partner as Student”

Dementia and Firearm Safety?

The National Institute of Aging reports that more than 17 million seniors in America over the age of 65 own a firearm, and states in a recent report, “memory, thinking, and judgment as well as physical and behavioral competence issues related to an elderly person’s safe operation of a motor vehicle apply to firearms, too. Gun availability can pose a particular risk to those with dementia.” Continue readingDementia and Firearm Safety?”

The Business Case for Dementia Friendly Communities

I conduct training for Dementia Friendly businesses, churches, and communities for humanitarian reasons. Our company’s slogan is “We all deserve the best,” which I believe especially applies to families, care partners, and their loved ones living with dementia. Finding ways to help those in our community with dementia remain active, social, and engaged, with their dignity intact, is simply the right thing to do. Continue readingThe Business Case for Dementia Friendly Communities”

Seek ways to keep your loved one engaged!

Often, during counseling or while facilitating my care partner support groups, I hear the lament, “My husband (wife) can’t do anything! Not a thing!” Since most of these care partners are talking about a loved one who is still verbal and ambulatory, I know their complaint is simply not true. Yes, this is how they may see their situation, but I have learned that what they are really saying is “My loved one can’t do the things I want them to do,” or, “They can’t do the things they used to do.” Continue readingSeek ways to keep your loved one engaged!”