In 2011 and 2019, the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC) conducted research about awareness, perceptions, and attitudes towards palliative care among adults, patients with a serious illness, caregivers, and physicians. A top concern among patients and caregivers is that doctors may not provide them with all the treatment options available. It seems that these concerns may be valid. Cardiologists and primary care physicians report being less comfortable with palliative care than other specialties. This post explores what caregivers, patients, and the medical profession can do.
Longevity seems like a recipe for social isolation and loneliness. The negative health effects associated with loneliness are profound. Yet, many older people cling to concepts of independence that may contribute to their isolation. What can caregivers and the community do to help?
Emotional contagion occurs when people mimic the emotions that they see in others. Researchers have found that emotional contagion is increased in individuals with mild cognitive impairment, as well as Alzheimer's disease. In this post, we’ll explore the "caregiver's mask" — this is a useful tool to prevent agitation in family members, but it can also take a personal toll on caregivers.
If you accompany your parent or family member to doctor's appointments, you may have felt at times like the healthcare system simply isn't optimized for the needs of older patients. Fortunately, times are changing. The age-friendly health systems movement is gaining momentum. This post explores the what, who, why, and how of this emerging trend that will deliver more tailored care to older patients, as well as benefits for caregivers.
Unpaid caregivers provide 83% of total care to individuals with dementia. In 2018 alone, 18.5 billion hours of care valued at $234 billion were provided by family, friends, and other unpaid caregivers. Fortunately, healthcare systems and various not-for-profit foundations and advocacy organizations are exploring more comprehensive approaches to dementia care which provide resources for caregivers that can reduce their stress.
With Americans in the 65+ age group expected to grow to 88 million by 2050, we can expect that the number of individuals with Alzheimer's and dementia will increase by at least 50%. At most consumer-oriented companies, ears would perk up in response to a customer segment comprised of millions of potential buyers. Could serving individuals with dementia and Alzheimer's be a competitive differentiator for companies?
This blog post may tread into the territory of TMI (too much information). However, if your parent has dementia or Alzheimer’s, helping them with lab tests can quickly become a challenge. While caring for my Dad, I adopted five techniques to help both of us through the trauma of routine lab tests. It’s my hope that these may help others out there too.
I was recently speaking with a friend whose mother is in her early 80s. She lives across the country from her Mom and is starting to become concerned about changes that she's detected in her mother's behavior. It begs the question, if your Mom or Dad seems forgetful, should you be worried about dementia? In this blog post, we’ll discuss potential next steps if your family member doesn’t fit the profile for “normal,” aging-related forgetfulness.
Let's say that your elderly family member is of advanced age and perhaps they are already suffering from various health issues. If the doctor recommends surgery, what do you do? The reflexive response may be "yes," since we assume that doctors know best. But is it as simple as that? We’ll explore that question in this post
Parents of children with behavioral challenges may be familiar with two experts in the field of collaborative problem solving: Dr. J. Stuart Ablon (Director of Think:Kids) and Dr. Ross Greene (Founding Director of Lives in the Balance). In this post, we’ll explore how the collaborative problem solving techniques and “Plan B” approach recommended for children could also be used productively by adult children interacting with parents suffering from dementia and Alzheimer's.