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Friday March 26, 2010 - Issue #478

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  From The Editor

Gary Barg - Editor-in-chief 

 A Tale of Two Cities

Yesterday marked our fourth annual Miami Fearless Caregiver Conference (and 93rd event to date).  It was a sunny, beautiful day with a packed house of family caregivers.  As I told the assemblage at the beginning of the day, to celebrate, we arranged for the television show “Burn Notice” to shoot in the parking lot. (It was just a coincidence, but hey, I would have arranged such a thing if I could have.)   Earlier this month, we hosted the second annual Nashville Fearless Caregiver Conference (keeping with the celebrity theme, we were honored to be joined by MS advocate, multi-platinum recording artist, and really nice guy Clay Walker).   Represented on the Question and Answer panels at both events were experts including: physicians, pharmacists, Social Security, hospice and our partners at the local Alliance for Aging and Area Agency on Aging organizations...continued 

Take care

Gary Barg

Long Distance Caregiving Support




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Feature Article

On The Move

By Jennifer Bradley, Staff Writer

For a caregiver, one of the most anxiety-causing side effects of dementia is wandering. With this diagnosis, caregivers come to expect severe memory loss and confusion as to time and place, but usually they are not prepared for the constant “watch” they must have on their loved one.

Nearly 60 percent of all people with dementia wander, especially in the middle stages. There are many facets to this unpredictable behavior, and the causes are as numerous as the tactics people have used to curtail them. In the end, knowing an individual’s personality, prior lifestyle and triggers which may send them “on the move” will make all the difference...continued

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Guest Column

Caregiver Burnout

By Dr. M. Ross Seligson

Being able to cope with the strains and stresses of being a Caregiver is part of the art of Caregiving In order to remain healthy so that we can continue to be Caregivers, we must be able to see our own limitations and learn to care for ourselves as well as others.

It is important for all of us to make the effort to recognize the signs of burnout, In order to do this we must be honest and willing to hear feedback from those around us. This is especially important for those caring for family or friends. Too often Caregivers who are not closely associated with the healthcare profession get overlooked and lost in the commotion of medical emergencies and procedures. Otherwise close friends begin to grow distant, and eventually the Caregiver is alone without a support structure. We must allow those who do care for us, who are interested enough to say something, to tell us about our behavior, a noticed decrease in energy or mood changes...continued



Ten Tips For Ensuring Medication Safety

By Seymour Ehrenpreis and Eli D.Ehrenpreis

People over the age of 65 represent 14% of the US population but consume more than one-third of prescription medications. The average senior citizen uses more than five different medications each day. This does not count nonprescription, over-the-counter drugs. As many as 90% of seniors also use herbal remedies and vitamins. While there is risk associated with each type of medication - including side effects, allergic reactions or interactions with food, alcohol or other drugs - the risk is magnified in seniors as they are typically more sensitive to these effects.

Well known practitioners and educators in clinical pharmacology and internal medicines, maintain that it is imperative that caregivers educate themselves about the proper use of medications...continued



I have been taking care of my mother, Alice, lives next door and has recently undergone several major surgeries over the past 3 years.  I am more than happy to do this for her and will always be there for her.  My friends have told me I could get paid for this as well - I have no idea where I would start.  My mother is 81 and I am 56, have a husband and raising a 14 year old granddaughter.  No problems there, but I have been reduced to 30 hours a week at work because of a car accident a couple of years ago and had back surgery, so I am limited in some areas.  My question is - Is there something out there that can help me subsidize my income and continue w/helping my mother? 
Some things are difficult to find out on these matters and if you have any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate your guidance.

Answer This Week's CareNote Support Group Directory. Click here for information about any caregiver support groups in your area.

Caregivers need your help. Please add information about your local support groups to our Support Group Directory. Include the name of the group, where and when it meets, city and state and support group leader contact information.

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Inside This Issue:

From the Editor

A Tale of Two Cities

Feature Article

On The Move
Guest Column

Caregiver Burnout

Ten Tips For Ensuring Medication Safety




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March 2010

My husband is in a nursing home and I have become friends with a man whose wife is also a resident.  We have spent time together listening to music in the day room of the facility and attending afternoon and evening programs there.

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Finding help through the V.A. and local Elder Care services has been invaluable. I have been the sole caretaker for my invalid mother for over 10 years...continued




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