Amazon SearchBox

Friday, December 25, 2009

More Christmas Poems

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

To all the readers of this blog who are eager to learn more about dementia, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very merry Christmas.

Your Christmas Poem


Mr Glisten Comes To Town

Robin

Christmas Folly

Christmas Spree

God Incarnate

Christmas Eve

I Have Not A Penny

All of God's Creatures

Christmas Wish

On Christmas Eve Morn

Dear Santa

Christmas Morning

Christmas Is

Full of Christmas Spirit

Once Upon A Christmastime

This Christmas Time

Last Christmas Day

Twelve Days 'Till Christmas

Hidden In The Closet

The Christmas Star

The Holy Family

Through Christmas

The Holy Family

The Miracles of Snow

Thoughts of You Friend

The Christmas Present

The Simplicity of Christmas

Advent Song

A Little Late

Denton Tap & Sandy Lake

The Disgruntled Elves

Oh Little Child

Christmas Star

Christmas In The Country

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Your Christmas Poem

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

To all the readers of this blog who are eager to learn more about dementia, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very merry Christmas.

Your Christmas Poem


Sandy's Christmas Poem

Christmas Is All About Love

Silver Strands

Christmas Spirit

My Christmas Tree

Family Christmas

Star of Hope

Sitting on Top Of The Christmas Tree

Christmas Senses

I Have Not A Penny

Sounds of Christmas

Christmas Season

Shopping Centre Christmas

December Remembrances

A Christmas Time of Year

Throw Away Christmas

Tinsel Truth

A Christmas Wish

I Was Just A Little Star

Christmas Used To Mean A Lot

A Christmas Angel

What's Happened To Christmas?

Christmas In The Air

The Old Man

His Regret

Jesus Is More Than Just Christmas

A Man For All Seasons

Seasons Greetings

The Not So Great War

Shhhh, Silently They Fall

Cherish His Christmas

Christmas Angel (The)

Christmas In Edinburgh

Whisper of Wings

Christmas Jamming

Monday, December 21, 2009

How to Understand Advance Directives for Healthcare

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

To all the readers of this blog who are eager to learn more about dementia, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very merry Christmas.

eHow

Understand that advance directives for healthcare permit you to furnish instructions to healthcare providers and your family about your wishes concerning medical treatments in the event you become incapacitated. Most often these directives only go into effect when you cannot make and communicate your own healthcare wishes. Up until then, you can continue to give directions to your healthcare provider even though you have an advance directive.

Healthcare providers are required under the federal Patient Self Determination Act to provide patients information about their rights to make their own healthcare choices.

There are several advanced directives. They include a Living Will, which allows you to say whether you want treatment if it only makes the dying process longer; a Health Care Power of Attorney (HCPOA) that allows you to name someone to decide about your healthcare choices if you are not able to do so;
and Advance Health Care Directives, which combine a Living Will, an HCPOA and other state specific options.

Instructions
Step 1Discuss your medical choices. Make sure the person you are considering as your agent understands what your wishes are concerning your healthcare.

Step 2Choose an agent. Understand that an agent is someone who will make medical decisions for you in case you are no longer able to do so. Make sure this person cares for you so he will carry out your wishes. You can limit his power if you so choose.

Step 3Understand that you should decide upon an alternate. This is a good idea because of situations where your first choice is unable to be your agent.

Step 4Make sure your doctor understands your advanced directives. Talk about your advance directives with your doctor before you sign it. Make any necessary changes.

Step 5Sign the.....read all of How to Understand Advance Directives for Healthcare

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Dementia Holiday Activities That Lower Stress and Raise the Joy(part 2)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

by Paula Spencer caring.com

Have fun with food

Make cookies.Someone once famous for her Christmas cookies may miss the kitchen activity. She may no longer be able to handle Pfeffernusse or a spritz gun, but together you could mix up a simple slice-and-bake dough (or do it for her in advance) and then let her slice the log and and arrange the cookies on a baking sheet. Or set out colored sugar, sprinkles, and other decorations for decorating a tray of sugar cookies or gingerbread men you've already cut-out. (Kids love this, too.)

Crack nuts. Put the person to work with an old-fashioned nutcracker and a big bowl of walnuts, pecans, and Brazil nuts. A nice, soothing activity during family gatherings. *

Make a soothing atmosphere.

Stock up on classic holiday movies. Favorites to put in your Netflix queue or pick up cheap at the local superstore: "It's a Wonderful Life," "Miracle on 34th Street," "White Christmas," "Christmas in Connecticut," "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," (animated Seuss version), and "A Christmas Story" (that's the 1983 modern classic about the boy who dreams of a Red Ryder BB gun). Invite your relative to choose if decision-making is not yet too fraught.

Put together a photo album of holidays past. This one takes a little time, but pays off in hours of repeated reviewing. Better yet, get a child to jot down the person with dementia's descriptions of each photo -- faces, places, funny things that happened (you may be surprised what's remembered, though also be prepared for nothing to be recalled); insert the notes in the album next to each picture.

Play holiday music throughout the day. Mental grooves are deep for these tunes, which makes them especially soothing. Stick to classics you know the person is familiar with – this is probably not the year to spring Bob Dylan's or Taylor Swift's new Christmas album. (Although you never know!)

Thanks Paula

Friday, December 11, 2009

Dementia Holiday Activities That Lower Stress and Raise the Joy

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

by Paula Spencer, Caring.com senior editor

Holiday stress can soar for caregivers whose loved ones have Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia. And for good reasons: Your own already-bursting to-do load stretches longer than the lines at the post office. Safety worries intensify – the person who has dementia may want to drive to the mall to shop, wander away in a crowded store, or insist on resuming dangerous old habits or activities, like baking or woodworking. You may feel prickles of grief over things the person can no longer do (travel cross-country to visit grandchildren or set up the Christmas tree, for example). Beloved traditions -- especially lots of lights, lots of company -- may now be bothersome or frightening to your relative. And did I mention that longer-than-ever to-do list?

One solution: Help the person keep busy and engaged with repetitive seasonal activities. Repetition that seems tedious to the rest of us is often soothing to someone with cognitive impairment. These activities stoke feelings of accomplishment and pride. All good: Call it repetitive de-stress syndrome.

Some ideas:

Make decorations

Set the person to work stringing garlands. All you need is a long heavy thread and a darning needle. Try stringing cranberries, popcorn, even O-shaped cereal (Fruit Loops are cheerfully colorful).


Fashion paper chains. These require a bit more dexterity: You have to cut the strips of paper, then curl them around one another and staple. A good project to have an older grandchild supervise while the person with dementia helps in whatever way she can. Use construction paper or, for a really festive look, heavy-stock wrapping paper.

Make pomanders. Clove-studded oranges to hang or display in a bowl are not only lovely, but their scent may evoke calming, happy memories. Again, they require a little dexterity but not much. Instructions here (scroll down; it's a different blog I do just-for-fun).

Have fun with food

Make cookies.Someone once famous......more tomorrow

Thursday, December 10, 2009

More Activities for People with Alzheimer's

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

Table Ball
submitted by Natasha Pokorny of Nesconset Nursing Center


Size: 10-20

Equipment: Tables that line up together and a ball (preferably a bright color).

Objective: The objective Table Ball is: improved hand eye coordination, socialization, attention span, following of simple directions.

Description: This activity is recommended for residents with Alzheimer's. Place tables end to end (enough to fit about 10 or more people all the way around). Place the ball (we use a bright red one) in front of one of the residents and tell him/her to roll it to someone else at the table. Encourage each resident to keep the ball moving on the table. It should be natural for them. Alzheimer residents in my facility can play this game for an hour before getting tired. It definitely lessens agitation.


NOTE: not all Alzheimer residents can play this game depending on what stage of Dementia they have. Place those more capable next to someone who might have difficulty and encourage them to help each other. This increases the socialization. Call out names often to refocus.


Shopping Scavenger Hunt
submitted by Debra Ekstrom of Geriactives on June 1, 1999


Group Size: 1-20

Equipment: scissors, sale ads from Sunday newspapers,plastic trays

Objective: I work with participants that have Alzheimer's/dementia. The objective was to create a fun yet learning experience. Most have no idea what things cost these days.

Description: Collect sales ads from several Sunday papers. Pass ads and scissors out to everyone. Also give them a list of items to search for: example-
1. tent
2. baby diapers
3. blue dress


I typed out over 50 items to search for. I had volunteers assisting them if they needed help. If they were unable to cut out the items, a volunteer would do this. The participant would cross off the items on their list as they found them. Items found on the hunt were placed on a plastic tray. A count was taken at the end of the activity and the person with the most items was the winner. They would share their ads with others and ask if anyone had ones they needed.
The interaction was fantastic. Even my low functioning people could participate. It was a fun activity....

Note: I need to add that the higher functioning people can search for the highest or lowest priced items. Also, the cut out ads can be saved for a collage as a later activity.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Activities for People with Alzheimer's

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

Leaf Hunt
submitted by Chris

Size: Unlimited

Equipment: Baskets

Objective: To prevent alienation and encourage creativity, exercise, helping others and overall stimulation.

Description: I work in an Alz. Specific facility and the residents are typically lethargic and do not want to stray far from the comfort zone. I decided that they needed a few things...first fresh air, I am a true believer in it. Second, Mild exercise. Finally, sensory stimulation.

I took a group outside armed with baskets and a mission...my wheelchairs were the "spotters" they would find the prettiest colors and shapes. My walkers wouldpick them up and shape the decorations for the residents who could not participate. ( self esteem ) Since we have mild weather here in atlanta this was great. I have found that if you have a "mission" for the residents, they feel special and needed. THis was a very productive activity. Just makke sure that there is no poisonous stuff in there and let them run wild!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Alzheimer's Therapeutic Activities

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

Alzorginfo.com

Activities for People with Alzheimer's
•There are many different stages that a person with Alzheimer's and dementia will go through, therefore activities for individuals in the early or middle stage of the disease will differ from the end stages of Alzheimer's.
•When planning activities for the person with Alzheimer's disease, creating routine and structure is extremely important.
•In order to improve quality of life at each stage of the disease it is important to focus on the patients strengths and abilities. It is important to look at what the patient can do, instead of what they cannot do. Planning activities is a process of trial and error involving continual exploration, experimentation and adjustment.
•Activities can be passive or active. Some patients may participate in an activity, while others may only observe or watch.

Communicating with An Alzheimer's Patient
•As Alzheimer's disease affects each area of the brain, certain functions or abilities can be lost. It is important for caregivers to remember that changes in a persons behavior and ability to communicate may be related to the disease process.
•Alzheimer's disease has a profound effect on language. The disease affects speech and the use of words, as well as the understanding of words. As the disease progresses, language as a means of communicating becomes less effective. Caregivers need to use different ways of communicating their message and staying in touch.
•When speaking to an Alzheimer's patient make sure there are few distractions. It is easier to communicate if other things are not happening at the same time. Television or Radio should be turned off.
•The tone of your voice is very important in speech. Speak slowly and articulate to help the person hear and process the words. Sit facing or stand in front of the person and make eye contact.

Facts About Alzheimer's Disease
•Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia affecting 4.5 to 4.7 million Americans.
•1 in 10 Americans over the age of 65 and nearly 1 in 2 Americans over age 85 currently have Alzheimer's disease.
•Alzheimer's disease is a progressive disease which advances in stages from mild forgetfulness and cognitive impairment to wide spread loss of mental abilities and total dependence on a caregiver. The time from the onset of symptoms until death ranges from 3 to 20 years with the average duration lasting about 8 years.
•The progressive loss of cognitive function is accompanied by pathologic (disease associated) changes in the brain.


The Importance of Pre-Planning: Alzheimer's Disease and Health Care Proxies
•Alzheimer's disease is one of the most emotionally draining and traumatic diseases for patients and families alike. The progressive, degenerative nature of Alzheimer's disease presents unique challenges for health care proxies.
•During the end stages of Alzheimer's disease the patient typically loses the ability to communicate effectively with their loved ones; adding an additional burden to the health care proxy.
•It is essential for families to openly discuss the kind of end-of-life care early, while the person with Alzheimer's still has the ability to communicate their wishes.
•Families can often benefit from a mediator (an independent third party, usually a social worker) to facilitate the discussion of end-of-life care.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Patient-Centered Care for People With Dementia

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

eHow

For people with dementia, establishing an environment that focuses on the individual's strengths, interests, preferences and particular needs will provide the best patient care. Patients with dementia can live at home, in an assisted-living facility or at a nursing home. Wherever they reside, you must concentrate on the individuality of each person who has dementia.

Dementia

Dementia is not a specific disease, but rather a group of symptoms that occur because the dementia person's brain no longer works properly. This person's memory, ability to think clearly, communication skills and behavior are affected by dementia. Because each individual with dementia has particular strengths, interests, and conduct, patient-centered care is essential.

Patient-Centered care

Tom Kitwood and the Bradford Dementia Group in England designed Person-Centered Care in the late 1980s. Patient-Centered Care puts the person first regardless of his level of mental functioning. This type of care takes into account each person's experience of well-being, through the eyes of the person receiving the care. The person living with dementia can experience physical and mental well-being as well as social and even spiritual well-being from this type of care. Many places provide....
read all about Patient-Centered Care for People With Dementia

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Introduction to Creative and Sensory Therapies for Alzheimer's Disease (part 2)

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

by Christine Kennard

Reminiscence Reminiscence refers to recollections of memories from the past. Reminiscence is about exchanging memories with the old and young, friends and relatives, with caregivers and professionals, passing on information, wisdom and skills. Reminiscence is about giving the person with Alzheimer’s a sense of value, importance, belonging, power and peace.

Lesley, an acquaintance of mine, sent me this great article about how this activity helped her. Lesley's Tip- Reminiscence Manuals

Painting, pottery, sculpting can be done as an individual or group activity. You can try out the different mediums.

Drama is usually used as a therapy in long-term care or day centers as a means of communication and therapy. A drama therapist's skill is needed to make the experience meaningful. Not only can drama therapy meet many of the aims of creative therapy and treatment previously mentioned, it can also help with diagnosis and evaluation, too. An example might be someone enacting how the medication they take makes them feel, or the therapist seeing what effect a new medication has on the way a person behaves. This information can feed into patient evaluation.
Drama therapy usually involves people of mixed skills and abilities and can use other mediums, such as art, to assist in creative expression.

Dancing and movement can be an activity offered in day and inpatient centers and it doubles as an enjoyable exercise. But just having a good dance to music that the person with Alzheimer's can remember, or is part of their era, is reason enough. Make sure you give yourselves a bit of space!

Cooking is a great means of expression, especially for women. It clues into their previous activities and skills and new ways for them to give back to their caregivers

I hope I have given you some useful ideas. Try them out. I would love to hear how you cope. We would all like to. Why not submit an article passing on all your tips and ideas.

Atricle Sources Include:
Cantley, Caroline (ed). A Handbook of Dementia Care. 2001. Philadelphia: Open University Press, 2001.

Bornat, Joanna (ed). Reminiscience Reviewed. 1995. Bristol P A: Open University Press, 1995.

Kitwood, Tom. Dementia Reconsidered-the person comes first. 1997. New York: Open University Press, 2004.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Introduction to Creative and Sensory Therapies for Alzheimer's Disease

Activities directors, caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great 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

Here is a dementia music activity

by Christine Kennard

Enhancing the Lives of People With Dementia
All societies value creativity and creative expression. When someone has brain damage as the result of a disease like Alzheimer's, many of their skills change and decline. As Alzheimer's disease progresses, caregivers have to explore new ways to engage with people who have the disease. In this article, I have put together a list of activities that can enhance a person's creativity and other abililties, and if you have a helpful activity you would like to share, please do so (see below.)

Aims of Creative and Sensory Activities for People with Alzheimer's:
•to promote wellbeing
•to help maintain skills
•to use other senses to aid communication by using sensory rather than cognitive pathways.
•to maintain and enhance relationships
•for relaxation
•to utilize past skills
•to express emotion
•to facilitate decision making
•As a means of cooperating with others

Let's Look at Some Activities With Links to More Information
There are many activities that use our creative skills. One of the interesting things about using creative skills is that often people who had skills in an area, such as painting or sculpting, often seem unable or unwilling to explore them further when they have a chronic illness such as dementia. New creative and imaginative activities have to be explored.

Sensory activities are well established for people with Alzheimer's. Aromatherapy and massage is a good example.

Reminiscence Reminiscence refers to....read more tomorrow