How can caregivers take care of themselves?

Taking care of yourself is one of the most important things you can do as a caregiver for someone with Alzheimer’s disease.

Care for your physical health by eating healthy food, exercising as often as you can, and asking for help when you need it.
Join a caregiver support group to connect with others. Look for local services that might be available to you using the search tool at Eldercare.gov.
Make plans with friends and family, keep up with your hobbies, and spend time participating in activities you enjoy.

Get more resources and information for Alzheimer’s caregivers.

Share this information on social media:

Twitter: #Caregivers: Learn about #caring for someone with #Alzheimers and get tips for taking care of yourself: http://bit.ly/2hyGKN1 #Alz #NFCMonth

Facebook: Keep your own health on your to-do list while taking care of a person with Alzheimer’s disease. Eat healthy foods, exercise, and get support if you need it. For more caregiving tips and information, check out the National Institute on Aging at NIH: http://bit.ly/2zA8BmZ

Try these activities with a person with Alzheimer’s

e-UPDATE from the ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE EDUCATION & REFERRAL CENTER

National Institute on Aging sent this bulletin at 10/10/2017 12:45 PM EDT

Household chores: Wash dishes, set the table, prepare food, sweep the floor, dust, sort mail and clip coupons, sort socks and fold laundry.

  • Cooking and baking: Decide what is needed to prepare the dish; measure, mix, and pour; tell someone else how to prepare a recipe; watch others prepare food.
  • Exercise: Take a walk together, watch exercise videos made for older people, use a stationary bike, use stretching bands, throw a soft ball or balloon back and forth, lift weights or household items such as soup cans.
  • Music and dancing: Play music, talk about the music and the singer, ask what the person with Alzheimer’s was doing when the song was popular, sing or dance to well-known songs, attend a concert or musical program.
  • Pets: Feed, groom, walk, sit and hold a pet.
  • Gardening: Take care of indoor or outdoor plants, plant flowers and vegetables, water the plants when needed, talk about how much the plants are growing.
  • Visiting with children: Play a simple board game, read stories or books, visit family members who have small children, walk in the park or around schoolyards, go to school events, talk about fond memories from childhood.

Learn more about adapting activities for people with Alzheimer’s disease.

Share this information on social media:

Twitter: People w/ #Alzheimers may have trouble deciding what to do each day. You can help! Check out a list of activities: http://bit.ly/2y9Sidk

Facebook: People with Alzheimer’s still enjoy participating in a wide variety of activities. Try involving them in simple activities like household chores, cooking, exercise, dancing, or visiting with children. Visit the National Institute on Aging’s website to get more ideas on adapting activities for people with Alzheimer’s:http://bit.ly/2xwAbMR

 

Preventing Cognitive Decline and Dementia: A Way Forward

Published on Oct 2, 2017

In a 2017 report, a committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine evaluated the most rigorous, up-to-date research on how to prevent cognitive decline and dementia, as well as recommended ways to conduct future prevention research. This video, featuring several members of the committee, highlights the report’s conclusions and recommendations.

Encouraging but Inconclusive: Interventions that May Help Prevent Cognitive Decline and Dementia

Published on Oct 2, 2017

In a 2017 report, a committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine evaluated the most rigorous, up-to-date research on how to prevent cognitive decline and dementia, as well as recommended ways to conduct future prevention research. This video, featuring several members of the committee, outlines the three interventions named by the committee: cognitive training, blood pressure management for those with hypertension, and increased physical activity.

Creating Partnerships to Provide the Saavy Caregiver Program

Shawnee Alliance in collaboration with SIU-Family Practice Memory Clinic, SIU-School of Social Work Dr. Elaine Jurkowski and the Carbondale Regional Alzheimer representative will be offering the Savvy Caregiver Program course starting in September 28th thru November 2nd.

To reach the persons we feel could benefit, the Memory Clinic will be reaching out to their patients and Shawnee Alliance will be reaching out to Family Caregiver clients we are aware of.

There are a few unique opportunities being offered:

  • The care receivers will either be in the Memory Clinic testing or being cared for by Dr. Jurkowski “Cognitive Stimulation Therapy (CST)” group.
  • The care givers will be in the “Savvy Caregiver” program.
  • All will be located in the Memorial Hospital of Carbondale complex, with ADS in Carbondale also being approached to assist if unable to participate in the CST.
  • We will have telephonic access available as well as Care Coordinators from Shawnee Alliance will offer face to face in the home if necessary.

For more information about the program (or how to think about setting up a similar one in your community), please contact:

Marsha Nelson
Community Service Unit Director
Shawnee Alliance
Phone:  618-985-8322 or 618-956-9627

Health professionals—get tools and training for your practice

Health professionals—physicians, nurses, social workers, and others—play an important role in identifying and caring for people with Alzheimer’s disease. Check out Alzheimer’s and Dementia Resources for Professionals to access FREE resources on topics like:

  • Tools for assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and management
  • Disease-specific information
  • Professional training and curricula
  • Clinical trials and studies
  • Patient care
  • Patient and caregiver education

Health professionals—get tips on talking about cognitive problems

Healthcare providers, particularly primary care clinicians with long-standing relationships with a patient, are often in an ideal position to notice signs of cognitive decline in older adults. Visit Talking with Your Older Patient to learn about:

  • Screening for cognitive impairment and how to talk to the patient about screening
  • Communicating with a confused patient
  • Conveying findings
  • Working with family caregivers