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Today's Caregiver Newsletter
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May 1, 2014
Issue #710
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From the Editor's Pen Gary Barg • Editor-in-Chief • gary@caregiver.com

Gary Barg

An Exquisite Mother’s Day Gift

I recently spoke with my friend Harry about his 90-year-old mother, who lives two counties away. He described her as a fiercely independent woman who lived alone and was still driving. But recently, she had become noticeably frail and was not allowing anyone into her home. On her recent Easter visit to his home, Harry noticed she hadn't changed or showered during the entire three-day stay. This was in distinct contrast to the fastidiously clean woman he had known his entire life. Harry told me he was worried about bringing the issue up with her because she might stop talking with him, as she had with Harry's brother after he had repeatedly attempted to communicate these same concerns.

I told Harry that it seemed he had few choices. First, he should ask his mom to meet with a geriatric care manager for an evaluation because that could improve her quality of life. Second, Harry should raise his concerns with her doctor. Most important of all, he needed to make sure that his mom knew that any concern Harry raised was not an attempt to take away her independence  ...more

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Healing the Hurt:
Overcoming the Pain of Arthritis
By Frances McQuire Paist, Staff Writer

Arthritis. The word literally means joint inflammation and includes more than 100 different diseases, all of which center around bodily aches and pains and the aggravations that accompany those wretched symptoms. For the patient, what was once daily routine threatens to become the daily grind unless stringent emotional and physical expectations are put into place  ...more

Today's Caregiver Friendly Award 2014

Dealing with Hearing Loss
By Lisa Evans

Imagine trying to have a conversation and constantly having to ask your companions to repeat themselves; or not being able to participate in a group discussion in the common room because the TV is on and six people are chatting around you. Sadly, this is the harsh reality of many seniors  ...more

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Simple Tips from Registered Dietitians

"Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean proteins and low-fat dairy products contain the nutrients we need to maintain healthy lifestyles," says registered dietitian and Academy spokesperson Andrea Giancoli. "Make sure your eating plan includes foods from all the food groups and in appropriate portions. The USDA's MyPlate is a great tool to guide and help us be mindful of the foods that make up our balanced eating plan."  ...more

Sharing Wisdom

From Connie in Florida:  
My mom lives in an Assisted Living Home with four other residents. She often does not understand "Why" Mrs. J doesn't sleep at night or likes to pack and unpack her clothes, "Why" Mrs. D. calls her names and forgets what she was just been told, or "Why" Mrs. A. cannot control her body movements and eats alone at the kitchen table.

I have found it very helpful to print articles on Alzheimer's and ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease), so she can get a glimpse into what the other residents are experiencing. One day she read an article that I brought to her and said, "Well, I learned something today." Priceless!

From Mike T. in Singapore:  
I know it’s very painful when someone close to you cannot recognize you anymore and when their personality changes from the caring and lovely person they used to be.

My dad has dementia and is now using tube feeding. We now treat him like he treated us when we were younger. We hug, kiss, and talk jokes with him. We are fortunate to have him as a dad showing us the right path. Let us caregivers be strong and show them love.

The best ideas and solutions for taking care of your loved one often come from other caregivers. Please post your ideas and insights and we will share them with your fellow caregivers.  

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