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Sunday, November 27, 2011

How to deal with anger with those who have dementia

Activities directors and other healthcare professionals here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals.


Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be


Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two


Follow alzheimersideas on twitter

The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]

Huffington Post
Co-written by Nettie Harper, MSRS and Michael Friedman, L.M.S.W.
"Go away, you thief," Margaret screamed when her son knocked on the door of her room. "You stole my money." He opened the door and entered. "Get away!" she screamed again. She was sitting in her easy chair. A cup of coffee was on the table next to her. She grabbed it and threw it at him.
"Mother, it's me, David," he says. "I didn't steal your money. You don't keep money in the room."
"You're lying, you thief. Get away from me." She was looking for something else to throw.
Stung by her words, he felt anger well up in him. He wanted to scream back, but he turned and left the room, closing the door behind him.
His mother has been living with Alzheimer's for almost a decade. Her memory for names and recent events has diminished more and more over time, as has her ability to deal with situations that diverge from her routines. She can no longer manage her finances, shop, cook or keep herself clean.
David is the child who has stepped in to make sure she has everything she needs and spend time with her. Today's outburst stunned and hurt him. He was uncertain what to do.
He is far from alone. Nearly 6 million people in the U.S. have Alzheimer's, many of whom are in theearly stages and can manage without much help. But caregivers of those with more limited functional capacity face difficult challenges virtually every day. Dealing with distrust and anger is one that emerges from time-to-time. What should they do?

David's instinctive reaction to walk away was a good one. Screaming back would have frightened his mother and accomplished nothing. It's even possible that this was a passing moment and that she will forget her suspicions and be herself when he returns to the room.
But if it is not a fleeting experience, what could be happening and what can be done?
It is tempting to think that Margaret's feelings and behavior are the result of Alzheimer's because the condition involves changes in brain function that often make it difficult to contain emotions. But most people with dementia do not behave abusively toward people caring for them, and Margaret and David have had a warm relationship until today. Something must be troubling Margaret today!
It could be that something in the situation itself set her off. Perhaps David's knock on the door startled his mother awake from a nap. Perhaps his voice through the closed door was muffled and merged with something ominous that she was dreaming.
There may be a physical cause. Is she constipated or does she have an impacted bowel? Does she have a urinary tract infection or a toothache? Has she been sleeping enough or possibly too much? Is she having trouble hearing? Has her vision blurred or darkened? Is she taking a new medication? Physical conditions such as these can have a terrible impact on mood and behavior.
It is also possible that her "paranoia" and "irritability," her suspicions and anger, are psychologically rooted. A psychiatric evaluation and non-pharmacological interventions, such as structured activities or psychotherapy, can be helpful for people with co-occurring dementia and psychiatric disorders. Psychiatric medications are sometimes indicated but must be used with extreme caution because of their risks to the physical health of people with dementia.
David's mother's distrustfulness could reflect distress about a change in her physical or social environment. Has she moved? Has the place where she lives been renovated or rearranged? Is someone she cares about sick? Has someone died? Has there been a change in caregivers? Have eating or other routines changed? Changes in environment or routine can both cause confusion and distress in a person with dementia.
David's mother's anger might be justifiable but aimed at the wrong person. Has something been stolen? Has someone been harsh with her? Has someone hit her? Has she been molested? It may seem a long way from being insulted to becoming convinced that your son has stolen your money, but the mind follows its own path.
Sometimes it is fairly easy to figure out what is going on. Sometimes it may seem impossible. But there is always a reason -- a reason other than, "It's the dementia."
Here are some rules of thumb that may help you when faced with anger.
• Never yell back. A shouting match may succeed in winning a frightened silence, but you will not achieve a change of inner feeling.
• Deal with your own emotions about being distrusted by someone you care for and for whom you are doing your best. It can be very hard to take, but it's probably not something that the person with Alzheimer's can control voluntarily.
• Don't try reasoning ("Mother, you don't keep money in your room.") People with or without dementia who are angry and suspicious are almost never moved by reason and logic.
• If conversation is possible, ask questions about the situation and listen attentively to whatever explanation is given -- sensible or not. You may get a clue to what's going on.
• Avoid disrupting the routines of the person and, if there are changes, get back into the routines as soon as possible.
• If there were only one rule of thumb it would be: Be kind.


Friday, November 25, 2011

Susan Berg knows about dementia

Activities directors and other healthcare professionals here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals.


Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be


Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two

Follow alzheimersideas on twitter

Writely Applied at Thanksgiving


Tags: creative writing, writely applied, writers, writing, alzheimer’s, dementia, dr susan berg, thanksgiving, violette desantis


I have to compliment Dr. Susan Berg at Dementia Today. She has been running a couple of post series at her site dedicated to dementia. The first was Top ways to enjoy Thanksgiving with those who have dementia (ten parts). The second has been Creativity and dementia which has covered a wide range of creative ideas to share with those close to you who suffer from dementia. This is such an important time for families and in many instances a difficult time to celebrate with those suffering..............read Susan's recent posts on this blog

Friday, November 11, 2011

Honor Veterans

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


Veteran’s Day is  here. This is a time when we remember all of our fellow man who have served our country.





Many of our veterans are senior citizens.As such their risk of developing or having Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia is greater than the average person. Also engaging in combat and the stress that brings can alsoincrease a person’ chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia.


In addition,many of our veterans were exposed to harmful chemicals.


Any way no matter what the cause of a veteran who has Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia,we should be proud to honot them on Veteran’s Day.


Engage these folks in a meaningful activity on their day.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Make a jigsaw puzzle

Activities directors and other healthcare professionals here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals.


Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be


Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two


Follow alzheimersideas on twitter

The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]

This is a good activity that can be adapted and 

modified to suit the needs of your target audience.





essortment.com
  • A jigsaw puzzle can be defined as an array of differently shaped pieces which, when fitted together, form a picture of some sort. Jigsaw puzzles have been around since the eighteenth century, but they became very popular during the Great Depression because they were an affordable method of entertainment. You can make your own jigsaw puzzle by following these simple steps:
Step 1-Choose the picture you want to display on your finished puzzle. The picture can be an enlarged photograph or a picture from a calendar, or something similiar. Do not try to use magazine pages as the paper is too thin and it tears too easily. Do not try to use thick posters either as the paper they are printed on is too thick and tends to become fuzzy around the edges.
Step 2- Decide what kind of backing you want for your puzzle. You can use a heavy cardboard backing, foam,or even wood. If you choose to use foam,you will need a large, flat sheet of the material. If you choose to use to use wood for your backing, you will need a thin piece of plywood that is big enough to put the chosen picture on. Note: If you do not have a saw, you can ask someone to cut it out for you. I do not recommend this
Step 3- Next, you will need to mount the picture onto the backing. You can use white glue, but it is not recommended because it it hard to work with. Plus, it takes quite awhile for the glue to dry before you can move onto the next step. Glue sticks are not good to use either because they do not stick as well , and sometimes they tend to come off of the stick in messy globs. Your best bet is a dry mounting spray which is available at your local craft or hobby store.
Step 4- Use the mounting spray by following the manufacturer's directions. Make sure that you mount the picture onto the backing properly. Lay the picture onto the backing perfectly flat with no air bubbles left in between the picture and the backing.


Step 5- Depending on the backing you chose, you will now need to cut the puzzle apart into iregularly-shaped pieces. If you are using cardboard, you may either cut it apart with a utility knife, or, a sharp scissors. It is best for you to do this step. Put the puzzle together to make sure that all of the pieces fit together properly.

                                   make your own jigsaw puzzle
For use with lower functioning groups, make only a few pieces.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Veteran'sl Day-A perfect time to honor veterans with dementia

Activities directors and other healthcare professionals here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals.


Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be


Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two


Follow alzheimersideas on twitter

The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]



Activities directors, other healthcare professionals and caregivers
I love holidays and here we have another opportunity to celebrate one.

I especially love patriotic holidays because most people with dementia identify strongly with patriotism.

Have a program to honor your veteran's. Let those with family members and friends that were veteran's tell about them at this activity

Everyone will feel good. Pass out some sort of certificate to them. Give all who are present some momento as well

As with all patriotic holidays,discuss symbols of patriotism.

I like to have a flag available.
Then I like to ask questions about the flag.
Here are some possible questions
*What color is the flag or are on the flag?
Side question
What other things are:
Red
White and/or
Blue ?
*What shape is the flag?
Side question:
What other things are that shape?
Again if these questions are too hard then………Come back again for the answer and for more ideas