The Longest Day (Alzheimers)

The Longest Day (Alzheimers) June 20th

 

Alzheimer’s, the most common type of dementia, is an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills over time. Usually appearing in people age 65 or older, current Alzheimer’s treatments cannot stop Alzheimer’s from progressing. Treatment can only temporarily slow the worsening of dementia symptoms and improve quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. Currently, 47 million people worldwide are living with dementia. The Longest Day is an event to raise funds and awareness for the Alzheimer’s Association. Held annually on the summer solstice, the duration of this sunrise-to-sunset event symbolizes the challenging journey of those living with the disease and their caregivers. In 2016, The Longest Day was held on June 20.

Tried and True Home Care Services spent time at Grace Place Alzheimer’s Activity Center playing games and socializing with people in the Alzheimer’s community. It was amazing getting to talk to these people and make them smile. We played Uno, Connect Four, Jenga, and Bingo. I taught a woman to play Uno and watching her face light up when she won made my whole day a success.

 

“Though those with Alzheimer’s might forget us, we as a society must remember them” -Scott Krischenbaum.

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Cardiovascular Health Study

seniors in a line exercising

The first step to gaining control over your medical condition is learning about it. Knowing what obstacles you are facing can make it much easier to find the right solution for you. High blood pressure is a very common problem among aging adults, affecting 75 percent of Americans older than 75. This condition can lead to heart problems, stroke, or kidney disease. A recent medical study found that a more intensive treatment plan for high blood pressure can be very beneficial. In this article from HealthDay News, Dr. Jeff Williamson talks about the study and how the results will affect the healthcare industry. One of the study’s major breakthroughs is that the intensive treatment lowers blood pressure more than previous treatments. Additionally, this intensive blood pressure treatment did not significantly increase risk for injurious falls and other serious side effects. With such a large percentage of the population affected by high blood pressure, this new treatment plan has the potential to prolong many lives. Read more in this article and follow these links for more information about the study and high blood pressure.

HealthDay News Article: https://consumer.healthday.com/cardiovascular-health-information-20/high-blood-pressure-health-news-358/elderly-benefit-from-intensive-blood-pressure-treatment-study-says-711163.html

In-depth Study Results: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1511939#t=articleResults

High Blood Pressure Information: https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/high-blood-pressure

The Big Give

Caregiver serving breakfast

 

There are a lot of emotions that are connected to caring for someone, especially when it is a loved one.  Guilt, same, stress from work or other family members, and the uncertainty  to make the right choices.  People are human, as so I am told, and humans have emotions that are wrapped up with the people that care about and especially those that they love.  Caregivers have a unique task, to care about someone and to give them that care even if they know that the toll of life will soon take that person from the earth.  I have read that more often than not, that the caregiver is stressed.

I have done this task myself, and before I started my business, I took on this role for my family.  It was hard, because although I cared for loved ones, it still did not mean that I could stop time.  I could not stop the diseases and the conditions that time brought along with it.  I could only give what I had.  But I would look in the mirror and ask myself, “Can I do more to bring comfort?”  The  answer was no.  I did what I could, when I could.  That’s the best that anyone can ask, right? Families daily trust us to provide an extension of their care. I take this responsibility very serious. Knowing that often times families need a break.

But again, I speak of a unique role, the one of caregiver.  Now I manage a group of caregivers, and I am faced daily with this daunting task.  I pride myself on surrounding my company with caring and compassionate people.  People that care, have emotion and the relate to those around them.  Sometimes they go above and beyond, yet I know that they still feel like they can do more.

When one of my caregivers face a loss, I consult with them.  I first review all of the issues surrounding the loss, and then I review the well-being of the caregiver.  I consider their needs and whatever they may need to bring them comfort. I am committed to giving the best attention to my clients and I have to also given that same attention to my employees.  Confronting guilt for over twenty years, I would think that it would be easier for me, but it isn’t.  I care.  That’s why I started my business in the first place.

When I look at caregiver guilt, I know that it can take a toll.  If one of my caregivers needs more than time and needs to speak to someone about their feelings, I provide that service to them as well.  I set a series of protocols to assist them through any transition time that is needed.  This may involve counseling or mentoring that caregiver to assist their recovery back into the workforce.

As I stated, a caregiver is only human.  I know that we all recover differently from any sense of loss.  I have to manage a group of individuals that cope with this on a daily basis.  I do what I can, because all I have to say to them is that they are not alone.  I know they are not.  As a caregiver, I know that we do all that we can, and that is all that I ask of my people.  I have setup a system to help them manage it.  My business is to care for people.  I like to think that I start with how I take care of the people inside of my organization first.  The result ensures that they are focused, and ready to handle the stress that comes along with the guilt.

 

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