Listen To My Latest Podcast Episode:
Cancer Caregiver Support: Caregiving & Bereavement Support with Ronni Levine, LMFT
Listen To My Latest Podcast Episode: Cancer Caregiver Support: Caregiving & Bereavement Support with Ronni Levine, LMFT
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Over 75% of adults with developmental disabilities live at home with family. There is a growing population of aging caregivers of adults with developmental disabilities, in part due to increased lifespan and extensive waiting lists for residential services (The Arc Autism Now).
In honor of World Autism Day, today's podcast episode focuses on older adults who are caring for adult children with autism or other Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities (IDDs).
In this interview, Lois Shingler, an attorney and co-founder of Peter and Paul’s Place shares her experience of being 70 years old while caring for Paul, her 45 year old son with Autism. She also provides several tips for other aging parents caring for their adult children with IDDs. Here's a peek inside the episode:
If you have an aging parent who is a primary caregiver it can be hard to know what to say and do. Caregivers, especially spouses, may be hesitant to ask for help or a break. They may think that this is part of the vow that they made, thru sickness and health. These 5 tips will give you some ideas of how to be helpful.
Simply being present and showing up for your caregiving parent can provide them with comfort and security in knowing that they're not alone. Caregiving can be challenging and rewarding.Hold space for both experiences. Some ways to be there and be present include:
Understanding the stages of caregiving will help you to identify where you’re at in your own caregiver’s journey and the common struggles and goals in each stage.
Knowing that you’re not alone and having tools to manage challenges that may arise helps will help you along the caregiver's journey and reduce stress and feelings of guilt and overwhelm.
There is no timeline for these stages along the caregiver’s journey. Some families receive a diagnosis of a terminal medical condition and move through these stages at lightning speed, and other families and illnesses (e.g., dementia disorders) can experience a drawing out of these stages.
The following 6 stages of family caregiving are inspired by Denise Brown's 6 Stages of Caregiving and based upon Caregiver Family Therapy by Dr. Sara Qualls and my near 20 years of providing family therapy to older families and as lead of a family couples...
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Researchers have been investigating brain health recommendations that help to reduce our risk for cognitive decline in older adulthood. Many of the tips that I'm going to share today are really about how to live your healthiest life and achieve optimal physical health, brain health, and mental health in older adulthood.
You may already be doing many of these tips. As you listen to this episode, take notes and make a list. Put a check mark by items that you are currently doing and a star next to the items that you need to be doing more of to achieve optimal health. At the end of the episode, give yourself some praise for what you're already doing, then choose one of the starred items to focus on to optimize your brain health and mental health.
Let's dive in to the 12 evidence-based brain health recommendations to reduce your risk for cognitive decline and dementia and promote mental well being:
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With so many questions about the difference between mild cognitive impairment versus dementia versus Alzheimer's Disease, we're glad to have experts like Neurologist, Dr. Jason Karlawish, to provide answers and share tips for staving off dementia when you have mild cognitive impairment.
Dr. Karlawish also implores the healthcare system, pharmaceutical companies, and society at large to change the way we practice inclusion of people living with cognitive disorders.
Whether you're a professional, a family caregiver, or person living with dementia, or all three, this is an interview you don't want to miss.
In today's interview, Dr. Jason Karlawish, Neurologist and Co-Director of the Penn Memory Center answers some of your burning dementia questions, like:
Helping aging parents move into a senior living or assisted living environment can be overwhelming, and emotions can easily escalate. Here are 12 tips for managing those emotions during difficult conversations with elderly parents.
Expect that this is going to be emotional. Know that it is reasonable that this is emotional and that there will be some fallout. Everyone is entitled to their feelings about this transition. Starting this discussion with the understanding that this will indeed be an emotional conversation will help you get through it.
Do a Dress Rehearsal
It can help to talk this conversation through with someone you trust before you bring it up with your loved one (like a dress rehearsal).
This has a couple of benefits:
When you care for a loved one with dementia, chances are you have years of experience with this person and are used to communicating with them in a particular way. Dementia changes the way a person thinks, processes information, and understands the information you're sharing, so the way that you communicate with your loved one also needs to change in partnership with the changes in the brain.
Learning how to communicate with a person with dementia takes practice. It's like learning a new language. Thankfully there are experts in dementia communication, like Dr. Natali Edmonds, who can help us develop skills in learning effective dementia communication strategies.
In today's interview, Dr. Natali Edmonds, Geropsychologist and founder of Dementia Careblazers, talks about 3 caregiving communication traps to avoid and shares a very important message to dementia caregivers.
The tips in this...
Chrissy Thelker was 55 years old when she had her first stroke and was subsequently diagnosed with Vascular Dementia.
With more and more people living with dementia, it's imperative that we gain perspective and understanding of the lived experience of people living with dementia and the importance of advocacy, peer support, and building a purpose-filled life living with dementia.
Today's guest shows us how.
Here’s a sneak peek at what you’ll learn from my interview with Chrissy Thelker:
Dear Dr. Koepp,
My 85 year old dad is calling me multiple times a day. It’s interrupting my time at work. Sometimes he needs something. Sometimes, he just wants to check in. He has someone assisting him, but he’s always calling me. Can you address how to handle an elderly parent who is calling me all day long.
Here are five strategies to try If your older loved one or your aging parent is calling you multiple times a day
1. Take the time to understand what's driving this behavior.
It's important to understand what may be prompting this behavior. Is there a new medical illness that's been diagnosed? Is there a worsening of an already established medical condition? Is there a progression of dementia disorder, or fear and anxiety around an existing condition? Are they going through any big changes or anticipating big changes? Like the loss of a loved one or of their home? Have they...
Dementia is one of the most important, but often overlooked, health care issues related to older African Americans.
Research shows that African Americans are two to three times more likely to develop a dementia disorder (compared to European Americans) and at the same time are less likely to be diagnosed early in the disease process and provided with adequate treatment.
Today's guest, Dr. Fayron Epps, Nurse Scientist and Assistant Professor at Emory University, Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing, is focused on changing this by improving access to resources and awareness of Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias in African American and faith communities by conducting research and providing education.
Here’s a sneak peek at what you’ll learn from my interview with Dr. Fayron Epps