"Memory Lane TV" Soothes Anxiety & Agitation in Dementia

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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

What do George Burns, Gunsmoke and Hemingway all have in common?

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some Mandala art

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Nursing Home Activities Resource

They’re all great to listen to!

Many seniors find themselves spending much less time socially when trying to manage the emotions of isolation, loneliness or depression because of their health and circumstances. So it is of vital importance that caregivers at home and in care facilities make sure every effort is made to keep seniors spending some time with others and, hopefully, actively engaged in games, fun and laughter. Laughter really is a medicine to the body and mind, and it can be very therapeutic emotionally as well.

Not all group activities have to be a rip roaring time either. As enjoyable as it is to be read to, seniors would enjoy just sitting together in a room and listening to an old episode of Gunsmoke, or the Lone Rangers. Many will remember sitting around the radio with their family listening to these great shows.

Remember when…? Those old radio shows can stir the imagination, can’t they? How about another good laugh to an old radio classic of George Burns? Or Laurel and Hardy? .

For those times when reading to someone isn’t practical, a book can still be well enjoyed on audio too. Some may enjoy rediscovering the suspense of Sherlock Holmes, or the descriptive prose of Hemingway.

The Old Time Radio shows and even the audio books could be used by activity director’s for trivia games and theme months. They engage the emotions and entertain the imagination!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Super Mid Fall Activity Brain Boosters for Those with Dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Associated Content

More Ways to Keep the Mind of People with Alzheimer's Disease, Related Dementias, Long Term Care Residents, and Others, Active This Fall
As with the early fall activities and discussion topics, the ones for mid fall also stimulate the mind of those with Alzheimer's disease, related dementias and other long term care residents. Keeping these people engaged in activities and conversation help to slow their loss of function. Having them keep a positive attitude also is a must

Mid fall activity topics include more about apples, but this time in combination with honey. Also on the list are the Jewish holidays of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. In addition to this, classical music and the piano are timely topics because September is national piano month and national classical music month.

The first activity idea incorporates apples, honey and the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashana. Rosh Hashana(the Jewish New Year) is most often in September, but it depends on the Jewish calendar which has goes by the moon. Simply put, Rosh Hashana is a solemn holiday. It is a time for reflection, a time when you examine your life and make amends for all the wrongs that you may have been part of during the past year. Yom Kippur is the "day of atonement" when you ask forgiveness for all your sins of the past year. There are some traditions of these holidays that everyone can enjoy

This year Rosh Hashana begins at sundown on Monday September 29 and ends at sunset on Wednesday October 1. Yom Kippur starts on the evening of Wednesday, October 8, and ends at sunset on October 9.

All Jewish holidays start and end in the evening.

A tradition on Rosh Hashana is to dip apples into honey. If you do this, it is said that you will have a sweet new year. This activity is relatively easy to do. You can have a discussion about the Jewish holidays. If you have any Jewish residents, make sure to involve him/her in the planning process. They may even reveal some more easy to do traditions to you.

Also call on them often during the discussion even if they are lower functioning. You might say something like, "Bella told me she used to(a tradition she told you about or you read about) on Rosh Hashana" Bella is the low functioning resident. It will make Bella feel good.

Then you can talk about honey. Ask who......read all of Super Mid Fall Activity Brain Boosters for Those with Dementia

Monday, September 21, 2009

50 Excellent Blogs to Learn About the Upcoming Healthcare Crisis

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

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by Linda

Are you concerned about health care reform? Many people believe that if this topic is not tackled, the U.S. is headed toward a severe health care crisis. Some people believe that this country already is embroiled in a health care crisis that may be too large to address.

The following fifty blogs focus on issues such as health care insurance topics, Medicaid and Medicare, long-term care (LTC), the reform debate and more. These blogs are written by doctors, medical personnel, anonymous bloggers who want to protect an identity, unions, and pro- and anti-health care reform advocates. The blogs are listed in alphabetical order within each category, as this method shows our readers that we do not favor one position or blog over another. If you know about any other blogs that address the current or upcoming health care crisis, please feel free to leave a link in the comments after the article

Long-Term Care

Long-Term Care, or LTC, provides a variety of services to meet needs of people with chronic illnesses or disabilities, no matter the individual’s age. Current issues include lack of funds, which raises some demand for incentives for individuals who can save for future long-term care needs. Also, suggestions to expand Medicare to include long-term care have been considered.

Advance for Long-Term Care Management: This blog and news site provides information and strategies for nursing homes, SNFs, assisted living and senior housing facilities and personnel.

Blog LongTerm Care: A writer who faced the difficult decision of long-term care for an elderly loved one brings this blog to help others understand the difficulties involved in this process.

Complete Long Term Care: Complete Long Term Care .com is run and maintained by LTC Global, which owns and operates a national group of Long Term Care agencies. Their blog addresses LTC issues.

Elder Law Answers Blog: Harry S. Margolis practices elder law with Margolis & Bloom based in Boston, with additional offices in Framingham, Woburn and Dedham. He edits

The ElderLawReport and is the founder and President of this blog site.
Cancer Action Network Health Care Reform Blog: This blog is in this category as it is maintained by the Cancer Action Network, an organization concerned with all issues surrounding chronic disease and long-term care.
Info Long-Term Care: Laurie Blanchard, B.A., MLS, provides a current awareness service for health care practitioners in long-term and geriatric care.

Long Term Care Review: Duane Lipham, a Certified Long Term Care consultant, provides a blog that updates readers on news and opinion about long-term care treatment.
Long Term Living: The LTL Blog is open to all readers interested in creating constructive discussions focusing on the long-term care industry.

McKnight’s Long-Term Care News and Assisted Living: This is a business news magazine that serves the intitutional long-term care community. The news, articles and blog entries are geared toward addressing assisted living managers to help them improve operations based upon regulatory and business changes in the marketplace.

Links for long term care answers

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

How to Apply a Person Centred Approach to Dementia Care

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

A symposium in April 2008 helped change the thinking about nursing homes. The theme of the discussion, called "Creating Home in the Nursing Home," was person-centered care and living surroundings.

With this theme in mind, accomplish person-centered care in a nursing home by creating a homelike atmosphere.and centering residents' care on their interests, talents and preferences. Understand the individuality of each resident with dementia. An atmosphere that works for one person may not work for someone else. Preferences and needs may change from day to day. Awareness of the whole person challenges the caregiver. Bringing a smile to the faces of people who have dementia rewards those who care for them.

Instructions

Step 1 Get a family history of the resident's past interests, jobs, siblings, children and hobbies by talking to family members, friends and the resident.

Step 2 Communicate with the resident in a way that he can best understand, using verbal reminders, gestures, written messages, or whatever it takes. He may have trouble finding words. Fill in the blanks for him. At the same time, compliment him.

Step 3 Observe the resident in his new environment. See what time he gets up naturally. Detect his current likes and dislikes. Determine what his behaviors are and what sets off problem behaviors.

Step 4 Nip agitated behavior in the bud. Divert and redirect. Do something to stop the unwanted behavior, then redirect him to another activity.

Step 5 Set his new room up with favorite items from his former home. Provide him with necessities like a television, clock, easy reading material or other things that delight him and improve his quality of life.

Step 6 Discover tips for environmental modifications that make life easier for the resident and the caregiver.

Step 7 Keep the.....read more about
How to Apply a Person Centred Approach to Dementia Care

Friday, September 11, 2009

Doll therapy for those with dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Spark of Life

Written by Jane Verity

Although Doll Therapy has been around for well over 20 years, the debate on using dolls in dementia care can still tend to provoke strong opposing responses that sometimes lead to a division between staff in aged care facilities.

This prĂ©cis is not about the ‘how to'. Instead, it aims to help build a bridge between the two opposing views and show how dolls can be used for their symbolic significance, with tremendous positive outcomes.

If you support the use of doll therapy, you are likely to have had positive, personal experience that dolls have strong symbolic meaning and provide purpose, nurture and healing for people with dementia. As a result you are most likely passionate about these outcomes and will fight for Doll Therapy to be an integral part of the therapy program.

On the opposite side, you may have thoughts such as: I'd rather die than imagine myself as an old person in a nursing home, walking around with a doll. You are genuinely concerned that introducing dolls can be childish, demeaning, maybe even patronising and often feel so strongly about your point of view that you ensure dolls are not permitted in your facility.

If you belong to this side, undoubtedly, you genuinely want the best for people with dementia and respect and dignity are high on your agenda. The way you assess whether Doll Therapy is acceptable or not is based on the thinking: Do unto others as you would like done unto you. This is a perfectly logical and rational conclusion.

This same logical, rational thinking is still active in most people in the early stages of dementia. However there is a distinct difference in the way a person who has moved beyond the early stages of dementia thinks. T his person may now have lost much of their memory and their logical, rational thinking as well as their social inhibitions. The beliefs and values they used to uphold are no longer important to them. They live in the moment - and that is all that matters!

When you care for a person in the later stages of dementia, it can serve you both well to consider a change of thinking from: How will the person respond to this activity? To: What activity will this person respond to?

We believe you can draw your best answer in deciding if doll therapy is appropriate by seeking input directly from the person with dementia. Let them show you whether or not they enjoy a particular activity.

Simply read their eyes. People with dementia will give you immediate feedback on what you do and say. You either rekindle "the spark" or you extinguish it. So focus your attention on their eyes for a genuine indicator and response.

People with dementia have some universal emotional needs that are often not fulfilled.

The five most significant universal emotional needs are:

To feel needed and useful
To have opportunity to care
To have self-esteem boosted
To love and be loved
To express emotions freely
When these needs are not fulfilled in this reality they tend to go back into their memories and recreate significant people, places, objects or situations where those needs were fulfilled. Often they relive these in this reality, such as Eva who is standing at the door, vigorously shaking the door handle, calling out: Let me out, I want to go home. My babies are crying.

This is not a crazy action but a perfectly meaningful way of seeking to fulfil these four needs. Eva is most likely feeling isolated because she is no longer involved. So she recreates a time when she was a mother taking care of her children. She is longing to feel needed and useful, to still be able to care, to have her self esteem boosted and to give and receive love.

Freud spoke about the Eternal Eros - the ever constant love - innate in us all, and the ability to display this nurturing love naturally, which women may return to and some men may discover for the first time. The need exists strongly but what is often missing is a natural way to fulfil it. This is where a doll with its powerful symbolic significance can be of incredible positive value.

From a wide range of documented stories we know that Doll Therapy offers many and varied benefits that reach far beyond providing the purpose and healing described so far. Doll Therapy can help improve the overall well-being of the person with dementia.

Doll Therapy has never been defined in a short, clear and precise way but rather through anecdotes and benefits. It has been the aim of this article to offer a definition of Doll Therapy as the wise and mindful use of dolls for their symbolic significance to help improve the well-being of people with dementia

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

What Do Licensed Activity Directors Do?

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities



eHow

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) require that all the places that get reimbursement from the federal government have a registered or certified activity director. Activity directors must be licensed or registered in the state they are working in. The activity director has many duties.

Preparing a Monthly Activity Calendar
Each month, a licensed activity director must prepare a calendar that reflects the day and evening group and individual activities that are offered to the residents each day.. The calendar should be easy to read, distributed to everyone and posted for all to see.

Assessing Residents Interests and Needs
When new residents are admitted, the director will ask them about their interests past and present. Also one finds out about their strengths and limitations.

Revising the Activity Programs
From time to time, the director may have to make changes to the activity calendar besides the usual changes done each month. This should be done when the interests and limitations of the residents change.
Writing Care Plans
Once the......read all about What Do Licensed Activity Directors Do

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

How to celebrate Grandparents day with those who have dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain boosting activities

Healthnews-stat.com

Folks with dementia love children, especially babies. Take advantage of Grandparent’s day to allow these two groups of people to connect. Kids make most people smile especially those with dementia

Over 5.3 million Americans have dementia. Most of them are grandparents. Folks with dementia love children, especially babies. Take advantage of Grandparent’s day to allow these two groups of people to connect. Kids make most people smile especially those with dementia

Even though Grandparent’s day is Sept 13, extend it to Grandparent’s week if you are dealing with someone who has dementia. If too many grand kids visit at once, the excitement and confusion might be too much for a dementia person. Have the grandchildren visit one or two at a time. That way quality time is exchanged and the level of confusion is kept at a minimum.

Keep visits short. Discuss dementia with the children before the visit. There are many good books to assist you in helping a child to understand dementia. One such book is The Magic Tape Recorder by Joyce Simard. This is a thoughtful and well written book that explains the effects of Alzheimer's disease and related dementias to children in a light and entertaining way. If the youngsters are familiar with the disease, the time spent together will be more meaningful for all.

What should you do during the visit?
There are many activities that both the dementia person and children enjoy.
*Look at family pictures and recall the stories that go with them. Of course, you would have told the child that he may hear the same story several times. If you do not have old family photos or have not organized them yet, use this book, Adorable Photographs of Our Baby-Meaningful, Mind Stimulating Activities and More for the Memory Challenged, their Loved Ones and Involved Professionals, by Susan Berg. It not only has cute conversation stimulating baby pictures, but activity ideas related to the photos are suggested.
*Sing familiar songs together. Patriotic songs are ideal because most people, young and old, know them. Some good songs are: America, America the Beautiful, and God Bless America
*Watch a portion of a classic musical movie. Do not try to watch too long because the dementia person or child may lose interest. Movie suggestions are: any Shirley Temple movie, Judy Garland movies including, The Wizard of Oz, and The Sound of Music.
*Have a snack or meal together. Everyone loves ice cream.
*Make an old family favorite recipe together. Then eat it
*Go for a ride. Because gasoline prices are high and attention spans are short, a short trip is best.

So this Grandparents day, September 9, include a loved one with dementia and a grandchild in a lovely experience for both.

alzheimers ideas

Sunday, September 6, 2009

How to Keep an Alzheimer's Patient Occupied

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here are more interesting dementia brain activities

eHow

by Logan

Caring for a patient with Alzheimer's disease can be a challenging experience due to the debilitating nature of the condition. Alzheimer's is a progressive mental disorder that eventually causes total memory loss. A patient must be protected and occupied in order to prevent injury. Since an Alzheimer's patient is also prone to wandering from safe locations, it is important to keep her busy with interesting activities.

Step 1 Create structured daily routines. Providing a schedule gives an Alzheimer's patient something to look forward to completing. It also promotes memory recall and chances for discussions. Since an Alzheimer's patient can get depressed about losing memories and autonomy, it is important to encourage consistent task accomplishments and attempts.

Step 2 Entertain the patient with colorful television shows and movies. Choose lively shows with simple story lines to keep the patient occupied. Opt for shorter programs as it may be difficult for an Alzheimer's patient to remain engaged for longer periods. Children's programming is often a suitable choice due to the program length, engaging dialogue and bright colors.

Step 3 Engage the patient with puzzles and games. Offering simple puzzles, such as crosswords and mazes, can help keep the patient occupied. Encourage an Alzheimer's patient to put together jigsaw puzzles or to play memory card games. Place more focus on having fun with the games than on winning to avoid discouraging this important cognitive activity.

Step 4 Read short stories. Choose books with colorful pictures to promote active listening. Engage the Alzheimer's patient by using voice inflection and exaggerated facial expressions when reading. Keep dialogue with the patient throughout the story by asking and answering questions about the plot and characters. If possible, ask the patient to take turns reading the story aloud. Large picture books can be a suitable choice for an Alzheimer's patient.

Step 5 Allow for group interaction. Accompany the patient to a variety of social events featuring family members, old friends and other patients. This helps the Alzheimer's patient feel connected with past memories and promotes making new friendships. Show family photos and memorabilia during these outings to encourage recall and peaceful vibes.

Step 6 Introduce friendly pets into the routine. Since an Alzheimer's patient may feel like his independence is limited, he may enjoy getting the chance to help care for an animal. Petting small animals, such as dogs and cats, can calm an Alzheimer's patient.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Enjoyable reading for People with Dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is interesting information
Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

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Spark of Life



People who have dementia enjoy reading simple, little one-liner sayings such as Affirmations and Life Wisdoms, which seem to feed their souls and lift their spirits. They also respond to Riddle Jokes with a smile and a laugh, and Proverbs bring the joy of recognition.

Even people with severe dementia, who communicate mainly through actions and facial expressions, show joy in reading such sayings or having them read to them.

Here are some examples:

Affirmations:
I am safe and I am free.
I stand here with pride.
My feelings are important.
Life Wisdoms:

The most important thing in life is to keep breathing.
The best knowledge comes from inside.
Forgiveness is an act of the heart.
Riddle Jokes:

(Jokes are extremely culturally specific and may need to be adapted to suit individuals.)

How do you make an orange turn over?...Tickle its navel!
What did the puppy say when it sat on the sandpaper?…Ruff, ruff!
What has fifty heads and no brains?...A box of matches!
Proverbs:

United we stand - divided we fall!
As you sow…so shall you reap!
A watched pot never boils!
Here are some suggestions on how to use these sayings with people who have dementia.

Create a ritual around your mealtime where people can take turns to read ‘Today’s Saying’.

Lift their spirit by sitting down with the person who has dementia and reading some of the sayings. Ask them, ‘How does that make you feel?’ or ‘What does this make you think of?’

Give a special saying to make that person feel really special or to give them a laugh.