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Archive for the ‘family caregiving’ Category

Do we always get along? Hell, no! That’s what I wrote in a recent article that’s now featured on The Shriver Report.org. (http://shriverreport.org/mothering-mother-caregiving-dementia-carol-odell/) People tend to romanticize caregiving–people who aren’t in it, or who haven’t been in it for very long. It’s the difference in making a movie such as Black Hawk Down compared to actually being in a real time war–bullets, IED’s and raining shrapnel down on your head. Caregiving days aren’t filled with marshmallows and clouds (all fluff). While there are tender moments when you can hear the angels sing, when you and your loved one have a very real and touching moment–these are rare because face it–relationships are, for the most part, messy.

Caregiving is part one part grit and two parts guts, and if you’ve always had issues with confrontation, then guess what? Here’s your own personal scavenger hunt because you will confront everybody from your sister who doesn’t want to pitch in–time or money-wise, to the home health aide who grabs your mom’s arm just a little too rough, and onto the CNA who whams your mother’s leg into a metal part of the underside of the bed and cuts her leg on the day of her discharge…and then tells you that you’ll have to go back to the ER (with its two hour wait and enough flu germs to warrant a quarantine) in order to see if her leg is broke (that really happened to a mother of a friend of mine).

Women are still, the primary family caregiver. Not that there aren’t amazing men out there–spouses, sons, brothers who are stepping up and never thought to do anything other than care for their loved ones. I get to meet these guys and let me tell you, they’re sexy. Nothing is more attractive than a good man who has integrity and heart, and I ought to know a thing or two about this because I happened to be married to one. Still, when it comes to sheer numbers, women take on the brunt of the caregiving experience. They’re single, divorced, dealing with their own health issues, or depression, working, raising kids and grandkids, and on top of all that–they’re caring for a parent, and sometimes two.

Stats on Women as Caregivers from the Family Caregiver Alliance/National Center on Caregiving:

Estimates of the percentage of family or informal caregivers who are women range from 59% to 75%.6, 7


The average caregiver is age 46, female, married and working outside the home earning an annual income of $35,000.8


Although men also provide assistance, female caregivers may spend as much as 50% more time providing care than male caregivers.9

When I said, “Hell yes, to caring for my mom,” I didn’t mean that caregivers have to go it alone–nor should they. Caregiving is a team sport. You simply CAN’T meet all of your loved one’s needs. You can’t. They need to be surrounded by a community. You can’t begin to meet their physical and relationship needs, and in fact, you do a great disservice to you both by not opening up your heart and our home to others. Sometimes it’s simply because it’s a bruise to our ego to admit we can’t do it all, and other times we don’t even know where to begin to ask for help. It’s also true that you or your loved one may not find a good fit right away. Whether you call a local church and ask for a volunteer, call your local senior center or your local/regional Council on Aging to find out what resources are available, the key is to not give up.

Caring for my mom would eventually include my family–husband, daughters, her friends (one who graciously came down so that my family could slip away for a weekend), relatives who called and offered prayers and encouragement, home health aides, and eventually the good folks (chaplin, nurse, home care aides, coordinator, etc.) at Community Hospice of Northeast Florida. It took all of us–and it gave us purpose and a common connection. Saying “Yes” to caregiving also means saying “Yes” to the circle of care you and your loved one needs.

The Shriver Report.org. The Shriver Report.org is launching a site for women, by women (mostly) talking about subjects that matter–to us.

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I have several friends who have recently loss their spouses or a parent, and at the end of an oftentimes long, exhausting, and heartbreaking journey, they find themselves stepping into the role of a caregiver once again. Most of us have more than one parent. We have in-laws. We have other family members who a struggling with everything from cancer to mental illness–and disease and the aging process doesn’t care whether you feel like caregiving. It doesn’t take into account that you just spent the last two years in and out of hospitals, rehab, physical therapy and all the less than fun but necessary activities that engulf your life. Caregiving can show up in your life (and probably will) at the most inopportune time.

What do you do?
Do you say no to a loved one who may have little, if any, options? Do you (can you) say, “no thanks,” I’m still grieving/need to take care of my own health/financial needs right now/I’m an completely bone dry and have nothing to give???

No. You probably don’t say, “Caregiving again? I’ll pass.”
Before you jump into caregiving again headfirst, I ask you to take a deep breath.
Now, plan.
You’ve learned a thing or two.
You know all too well just how sucked in you’re about to be.
You know all too well the wild world of prescription screw-ups, back-to-back doctor visits, 2am ER stints, botched lab results, infuriating insurance issues, and the dreaded orange vinyl chair hospital nights that somehow lead to hospital weeks.
So use what you know.
You might need to and want to say yes, but do you have to say yes to everything?
Do you have to move in/or they move in with you?
Are you prone to ignoring your own health/financial/relationship needs?
Are you afraid of what’s going to happen to you and your life if caregiving takes yet two, three more years of your life?

Don’t get me wrong–I am a 100% advocate of caring for our loved ones.
I firmly believe that family (for the most part–there are always exceptions) should care for family and then that care ripples out from there–church, friends, extended family members, hired or volunteer care) as needed. I ache at the thought of family members who simply can’t be bothered to miss a day of work, or can’t give up a weekend to make sure that their loved one’s legitimate needs are met. As a caregiver inspirational blogger and speaker I’ve heard lots of folks who have sisters/brothers adult children and others who refuse to contribute to family care, but I also see folks who give too much, who never say no, not even to a demanding, dramatic person who expects to be the center of everyone’s universe.

What I’m speaking of is to glean from the wisdom that comes by experience.
Reflect back on your previous caregiving time.
When did you give too much?
When did you ignore your own health issues, relationship or career issues?
Does that continue to effect your life?
Do you have a plan for meeting your own needs while caring for others?
Are there things/people you lost you can’t get back?
Did you care-give at times when it wasn’t truly needed to the extent that you gave?
Are you now able to speak up when you need to?
Can you step back and look at the whole picture–and count “you” into the equation?
Can you say no when you need to and not fall into a quagmire of guilt?

Honestly, being a caregiver the second time around can be a good thing.
How, you ask?
You’re stronger.
You’re not flung here and there by drama and trauma.
You don’t think doctors and medical personnel are demi-gods that can never be wrong and should never be confronted or disagreed with.
You know that you have to step back when you feel so drained that resentment, anger, and exhaustion threaten to strip you of all reason and ability to care for anyone, particularly, yourself.

Caregiving the second time comes with the quiet realization that (in some situations) your loved one will die.
It’s tough to say that word, die, but that’s what we do. All of us. Someday.
So, caregiving…again, means that you’re not so scared.
You make this time mean something.
You can’t keep them alive, you know that this time, but you can make life sweet.
You can provide companionship.
You can be their advocate, their voice.
You can honor their wishes.
You can make sure they get the pain medications they need.
You can be present when it’s time.

I wish, for you, that if you’re just getting out of a caregiving situation, that you would have a break. That you’d get to attend to your own life for a little while–and even have some fun–but we don’t always get to decide when caregiving will circle back around. But I do know that you have changed–so trust that you will know what to do.

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What makes a good blog? Great information, reliability, connection and resources, honesty, practicality and humor are the traits I look for when I’m blog hunting–and so it’s a pretty big honored to be considered in the top ten online influencers in Alzheimer’s. Caregivers rely on the information they find on the web to be reliable and usable–and if it’s relate-able, then that’s all the better.

Want to know the top ten Alzheimer’s blogs? Read below. Every blog/website offers a unique perspective that give caregivers and their loved ones the best information they need.

SharecareNow Names Top 10 Online Influencers in Alzheimer’s Disease

 

— Touching the Lives of Patients, Caregivers and Families through Personal Stories, Expert Knowledge and Credible Information —

 

(Atlanta, GA, and San Francisco, CA – November 5, 2012) – Representing a diverse group of caregivers, celebrities, reporters and bloggers, the Top 10 Online Influencers in Alzheimer’s Disease list was released today in an effort to provide valuable information and resources to the millions affected by the disease, as well as those caring for them.

“Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s can be a physically, emotionally and financially challenging experience, making access to reliable information about various stages of the disease all the more important,” said Kevin Soden, MD, MPH, Sharecare editorial advisory board. “Recognizing the most influential and credible individuals in this field during November’s Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month serves as a powerful opportunity for us to support not only those diagnosed with the disease but also their loved ones and caregivers.”

To further support the Alzheimer’s community, Sharecare today announced the addition of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA) to its network of experts.  As a new content collaborator, AFA will address topics about Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, including how to care for a loved one with the disease.  According to the AFA, 5.1 million Americans may have Alzheimer’s disease and as many as four family members may act as caregivers for each individual with the disease.

 

To be included in the SharecareNow 10 – Alzheimer’s Disease list, individuals must have demonstrated a consistent impact on Alzheimer’s-specific conversations online over the past year. Top influencers have an active online presence across multiple interactive channels – including Twitter, Facebook, video and blogs – and address a wide range of Alzheimer’s topics, including symptoms, treatment and care. Influence is measured and quantified through a proprietary algorithm based on more than 70 individual metrics, including Alzheimer’s disease relevance, syndication, presence and reach.

 

The following top influencers make up the SharecareNow 10 – Alzheimer’s Disease list:

 

  1. 1.      Lori La BeyAlzheimersSpeaks.com
  • Founder of Alzheimer’s Speaks and host of the radio show Alzheimer’s Speaks

 

  1. 2.      Leeza GibbonsLeezaGibbons.com
  • Advocate for Alzheimer’s patients and caregivers and founder of Leeza’s Place; former host of Entertainment Tonight and current host of America Now

 

  1. 3.      Elayne ForgieAlzheimersCareAtHome.com
  • President and CEO of Alzheimer’s Care Resource Center and founder of ElderCare at Home and AlzheimersTraining.com

 

  1. 4.      Sherri Snellingblog.alz.org
  • Founder and CEO of the Caregiving Club, Chairman of the National Alliance for Caregiving and Senior Director at Evercare, an extension of the UnitedHealth Group

 

  1. 5.      Gina KolataNYTimes.com

 

  1. 6.      Stefanie Bonigut, MSWalznorcalblog.org
  • Social worker and Family Care Specialist for the Alzheimer’s Association

 

  1. 7.      Elizabeth Nolan Brownblog.aarp.org
  • Associate editor to the women’s health and wellness site Blisstree.com and contributor to the AARP Blog

 

  1. 8.      Bob DeMarcoAlzheimersReadingRoom.com
  • Alzheimer’s caregiver and founder of the Alzheimer’s Reading Room, a site devoted to educating and empowering Alzheimer’s caregivers, families and the wider Alzheimer’s community

 

  1. 9.      Carol O’Dellcaroldodell.wordpress.com
  • Author of the blog “Caregiving, Mothering Mother and More,” contributing editor at Caring.com and author of Mothering Mother: A Daughter’s Humorous and Heartbreaking Memoir

 

  1. 10.   Rose LamattRoseLamatt.com
  • Blogger and author of Just a Word: Friends Encounter Alzheimer’s and Is Life One Big Goodbye; contributing writer for the Alzheimer’s Reading Room

 

A downloadable version of the SharecareNow 10 – Alzheimer’s Disease list can be found here: http://www.sharecare.com/static/sharecarenow-alzheimers-top-ten-infographic. Additional information, including full bios and the methodology behind the influencer list, is available at http://now.sharecare.com.

 

A 

About Sharecare

 

 

 

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“I get tired of being told to take care of myself. Yeah, I know I should, but it’s just not that easy.”

It’s not like you haven’t thought of sleeping eight continuous hours, or that you haven’t thought of making an appointment to get your teeth cleaned, or signing up for yoga or join the Y. It’s just that a few things keep getting in the way….

Your loved one gets on a coughing jag from 2-4 a.m. You’ve been in hospital land for like, three weeks. You’re sick of going to doctors so you don’t relish the thought of making an appointment for yourself. And you know you should want to but the idea of getting into gym clothes and working out is about as appealing as a proctology exam.

I got whapped back into caring for a caregiver this week. We’re in the hospital with my two-week old granddaughter who needed heart surgery. I’m on vigil, side-by-side with my daughter and son-in law. I’m back in the world of vinyl sleeping chairs, Bunn-o-matic coffee and powdered cream, monitors, IVs, and waiting for rounds. It’s oh so familiar.

As the 2nd in line (caregiver of a caregiver) I have just the slightest shift in perspective. After a week or full-out trauma and eating only cafeteria food knowing we could be here a month, I can now begin to make a plan. I went to the store and bought us salads, carrots, grapes and apples–and 100 calorie snack packs for the middle of the night, help relieve the stress munchies.

I’m taking the stairs instead of the elevator several times a day (we’re on the tenth floor). I’m avoiding anything fried but am allowing for the occasional cookie and hot tea snack. I try to go for several long walks around the University of Florida/Shands campus a day. I’ve thought about doing some lunges and push-ups but I haven’t actually done it yet:) We’re all to worried to think much about our own bodies, but it really won’t do anyone any good if we just lose it on a giant box of Krispy Kremes.

Bottom line, no one likes to be told what to do.

Telling a caregiver to take care of themselves might get you hurt, or a nasty look at the very least. Buy them a cup of their favorite hot tea.  Give them a gift card for a massage. Tell them a funny joke so they’ll chuckle the rest of the day. Give them a loofah and some body salts.

Put your heart where your mouth is.

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It’s not that most caregiving families want to, but there may come a time when your spouse’s or elder-parent’s care becomes more than you can physically or emotionally manage at home. Caregivers need to look past the initial bells and whistles of a care facility to make sure that your loved one is receiving the very best care at all hours of the day and night.

How to Choose a Care  Facility For a Loved One:

  • Plan early—don’t wait until it’s an emergency. The highest rated
    care homes usually have a waiting list.
  • Don’t pay for more than you need. Know that cost rises with care needs, so don’t pay for services your loved one doesn’t need–yet. Ask if they have a graduated care situation or whether your loved one will have to find another home if their care needs increase.
  • Consider smaller care facilities or even a group home. Bigger isn’t always better.
  • Don’t get razzle-dazzled by fancy entrances/amenities. Look past all that and notice how the staff interacts with their residents–are they caring, engaged, friendly, and prompt?
  • Visit several times/and several shifts before making your
    decision–and eat the food for yourself–and if you can, talk to a resident or family member of someone who’s already living there
  • Consider visiting with a friend or someone who is impartial and can notice things you don’t want to–or can’t see.
  • Ask other caregivers if they know about this facility and
    “what’s the word on the street?” Check out a care home rating site such as the ones listed at: http://www.consumerhealthratings.com/index.php?action=showSubCats&cat_id=268
  • Check online for more facility information and reviews–Caring.com lists care homes, facilities and hospices in your area–along with helpful checklists and other info to assist you http://www.caring.com/local
  • Does the facility offer family support services, such as caregiver support
    groups and family event days?
  • Discuss how client and family concerns are handled, what is the
    protocol for disputes? Also find out the procedure for how to move your loved one to another facility if that becomes a necessity.
  • Ask about turnover rate of employees and residents. If people are happy–they stay.
  •  Ask how they screen their employees and how often this is
    updated (know that some care facilities allow employees to have misdemeanors, etc. on their record)
  • Ask to view the ACA survey. It will list the facility’s records on everything from safety records, employee issues, MRSA and other infections, bed sores, accident/fall rates.
  • How is orientation handled and what efforts are made to
    integrate your loved one with the staff and other clients?
  • Find out if your spouse/parent’s doctors/hospital serve this
    care facility or if you will have to find all new doctors. (Many physicians or their assistants visit care homes, which can make it easier than your family member having to make a trip into the doctor’s office.
  • Consider location and how often you–and others–can visit.
  • Consider other location factors–should your loved one stay in their own community where they have friends, doctors, and religious support?
  • Never forget that you are your loved one’s care advocate. Stay involved, hang out, and continue to be aware of their physical, financial, and emotional needs.
  • Visit often and make sure it’s not a “to do” session. Caregiving can strip you of your most important role–to be the spouse, partner, daughter or son. Once your loved one settles in, then it’s time to make an effort to be their emotional support–brighten their day by wearing a smile, bringing small presents, taking them outside (if possible) or bringing them home for a few days around the holidays.

~Carol O’Dell

Author of Mothering Mother, available on Kindle

Other great care facility information can be found at:

http://www.caring.com/articles/caring-checklist-evaluating-an-assisted-living-facility

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Forget Kubler-Ross’s five stages of grief. They’re merely a jumping off point. Grief isn’t linear. Grief is multi-layered and doubles back on itself. Grief is raw. For many, it’s the closest a person comes to unhinging–to a break with reality. Getting through grief isn’t easy and isn’t predictable. Getting through grief is different for each one of us, but the more we share, the more we reach out, the more we help each other.

Suicide. Murder. Car accidents. Cancer. A sudden heart attack…or the long and winding road of Alzheimer’s. Grief doesn’t start at the point our loved one breathes his or her last breath. Grief is about loss, and loss can start months or even years before death takes the ones we love.

Grief is biological. Animals grieve. Watch this YouTube video where an elephant herd has found the bones of their matriarch. They form a circle around the bones, pick up her bones and hold them in their trunk, feeling each crevice with their trunk. This collective sorrow is healing–and even elephants know they need to grieve.

And yet some of us don’t show grief.

We don’t cry at funerals.

We don’t sentimentalize those who have gone before us.

We show no emotions–does that mean we’re heartless?

Showing and feeling grief are two different things. Some of us don’t share our emotions with many others, but that doesn’t mean we don’t feel them.

Emotions don’t go away simply because we squash them down and cover them up–they ooze out the sides of our life. We overreact to a traffic jam. We drink too much. Sleep too little.

Others get lost in grief. The sorrow, regret, and sometimes guilt swarm around us and threaten to steal all joy and purpose. Years go by–and we’re stuck. We can’t move on. We have no desire to. It’s as if time has stopped and we got off and the train sped away leaving us back then–back there.

So how do you get through grief–how do you feel it when you need to and then allow it to pass–before it destroys your life?

No simple answer to that one. I won’t pretend to know.

Sometimes we have to force ourselves to get back into life. Join a group and make ourselves show up.

For some of us anti-depressants seem to help. For others, a therapist. We need to talk it out.

For others, we have to allow ourselves to wallow for a while–until we get sick of our own juices.

No one way.

How to be there for someone else who is grieving?

No “you should be better by now,” or ‘I’m worried about you.” That doesn’t help.

Be willing to sit quietly beside them. Show up at the same time each day, or each week.

Listen. Offer distractions. If you have to, get in their face and fight for them. If they reject you, keep coming back.

One of the most tender betrayals of grief and how very long it can take and how different it is for everyone–and that we have no right to judge someone else’s loss–is the movie, “Reign Over Me.” It’s about a man who lost his wife and children in the 9/11 tragedies. It’s one of the more honest conversations about grief–one that I think might help.

What those who are experiencing grief need is to believe in hope again–some small sliver of hope.

And you might just be the hope they’re looking for.

~Carol O’Dell

Author of Mothering Mother, available on Kindle

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CNN reported this week on people with Alzheimer’s who develop violent tendencies. This is the silent story that many families don’t want to talk about.  Family members (aka caregivers) don’t want to expose their loved ones. These respected family members were once doctors, lawyers or indian chiefs, as the saying goes–Alzheimer’s is the great equalizer and doesn’t care who you are, and pays no attention to your socio-economic status

We don’t talk about it. We deny and cover up, and stop inviting friends and extended family over. Spouses lie, make up excuses about the bruises. We’re afraid. We don’t know what comes next–where will they go, what care will they receive, can we even afford this care–and what if they get so bad that even the care facilities don’t want to deal with them?

How long can–or should a family, a spouse, an adult child manage the care of a person with Alzheimer’s, and particularly one who is dangerous?

As I read the article (link below) I saw correlations to my mother.

I remember the day she dug her nails into my arms and screamed for a good five minutes her nose practically mine. She knocked me out of the way to go and catch her imaginary taxi. Her eyes were wild. I knew we were in deep trouble. I knew that as a mother to teenagers who lived in the same house that I could not subject them to this. We had hit our wall.

My mother had Parkinson’s for years. The Alzheimer’s bloomed after she moved in with my family and me. Or perhaps it was there and she hid it–and I played along. I had noticed “signs” of paranoia and anger early on, but I chalked this up to her rather expressive personality.

As the disease took hold, she lost the ability to reason. I couldn’t convince her that my children weren’t stealing the crocheted doll that covered the toilet paper roll on the back of her toilet. I couldn’t convince her those were only squirrels running on her roof, not thieves breaking in night after night. I couldn’t reason with her that no, she couldn’t just wander off and catch a taxi to “go home” in our Florida suburban neighborhood. It always baffled me that long after our names and other useful information left her mind that the word, “taxi” stayed. Mother grew up in Georgia, not New York. I think she maybe rode a taxi twice in her entire life.

I stopped talking about it. People would say, “Just put her in a home.”

Like it’s just that easy. Money concerns–memory disorder units and other types of Alzheimer’s facilities that take this kind of patient cost upwards of $5,000 a month and are not fully covered by Medicare or insurance. Not to mention the emotional hurdles of all the times she begged me to never put her in a home, the worry of who would care for her, see past this, and how in the world do I even find a place and people I can trust?

So I stopped inviting people into our home. I stopped taking her places where she tended to act out. It was random enough that i wasn’t dealing with on a daily basis, but the inability to sit still, to pace, to worry, to fixate on me or on something bizarre–all that was there pretty much of the time. She trashed her room with the veracity of whole fraternity who had chugged a couple of keggers. I felt as if I were living in a lockdown facility and I was the unarmed warden.

My concern was that I’d lose it–my cool, my temper, my ability to control the situation. I could forgive her. She had a disease, that’s all. I had to rise above it. I was the one responsible for my actions. I didn’t want to do something I’d regret. I didn’t want to mis-handle my mother or this situation–or cause harm to my children, my marriage, my life. That tightrope was beyond exhausting.

My mother’s violent stage didn’t last too long. She was spiraling fast. Soon, within a few months, she went from violent to forgetting how to swallow. At that point I chose not to use a feeding tube. I had gone from one impossible decision to even a worse one. The thing about having your loved one at home and not in a care home is that you are 100% responsible for these decisions–and you have to follow them through. You witness the consequences of your decisions. You stand there every day and question yourself a million times. You don’t get to get in your car and leave. You stay.

How bad can it get?

Well, I’m here to tell you that Alzheimer’s can give them super strength and amazing endurance.

What’s the percentage of people with Alzheimer’s who are violent? The stats say 5-10% (National Health Monitor).

It’s a lot like schizophrenia in that most people who suffer with this terrible mental illness are not violent, but those that are get a lot of press, and can indeed, hurt people. It may be small percentage, but it still raises alarms.

Some Behaviors That Accompany Alzheimer’s Are:

  • Pacing,
  • Repeated mumbling words or repeated sounds
  • Ticks, cursing, “ugly” (berated, accusatory, or sexual) talk
  • Delusions (visual or auditory hallucinations)
  •  Pounding on a table or hitting their head, hand or object repeatedly
  • Fixation on some thing or someone (paranoia, anxiety)
  • Biting, pinching, hitting, kicking
  • Crying, moodiness, and other outbursts
How to Handle a Person with Alzheimer’s Who Turns Violent:  (Based on the CNN article)

1. Back down.

Most of the time, the incident escalates when the patient does not want to do tasks such as undress, brush teeth or bathe. Don’t physically force the person to do anything, she warned. This could worsen the situation and possibly injure all parties involved.

2. When the patient is upset, apologize — even when it’s not your fault.

Using this strategy will buy you time and good will. Don’t argue with an Alzheimer’s patient, because you can’t win.

3. When the patient becomes agitated, change the topic. (Redirect)

Change the subject. Move to another location. Distract them by something fresh–the birds outside, pretend a friend has called (make the phone ring) play a song they like. “If you can stay calm, you can mirror that calmness back to them,” Kallmyer of the Alzheimer’s Association advised.

4. Keep in mind that the world is distorted for an Alzheimer’s patient.

Know your loved one. Do noises startle them? Are they more upset around a certain person or time of day? Do you know what calms them? Do you have them on a schedule that works well for both of you? Are they sensitive to sugar, caffeine, or even experiencing pain (toothaches, broken ribs, urinary tract infections, and other chronic pains oftentimes goes undiagnosed and can add to their agitation).

5. Call for help.

When in doubt, ask for help. Call the Alzheimer’s Association Helpline. 24/7 for confidential help.

1.800.272.3900         1.800.272.3900.

No one is going to blame you or take them from you–if you ask for help before something horrible happens. No one can judge what you’re going through, and no one can understand what you’re going through. Be confident and don’t be shamed by this. Get the help you need. Call 911. Don’t wait for a tragedy. Get the guns out of the house–now. Hide the knives. You can live with a butter knife until you figure this out. You’re more than just a caregiver. You’re family. As much as you want to give up–you can’t. But don’t go it alone. Don’t isolate yourself. Reach out–get help–share your story. We’ve all been shamed for far too long.

CNN article link:

http://www.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/03/30/alzheimers.violence.caregiving/index.html?hpt=C1

Great resource: Elder Rage, by Jaquelline Marcell

Carol O’Dell’s book, Mothering Mother is now available for your e-reader! Kindle version availble here.

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