What do you do when a loved one’s behavior becomes unpredictable and unreasonable to the point of being unbelievable? What are your choices if it is no longer safe for your mother to live in her own home but she refuses to accept help from anyone except you? What do you do if your father gets so upset that you cleaned his house that he tries to strangle you? Sometimes we don’t realize how bad things are until we find ourselves in a moment of crisis. Join us as we talk about “Tough Customers” with Dr. Joseph M Casciani, founder and President of Concept Healthcare, a company that provides online education and training for those working with older adults. In this show we also talk with Jacqueline Marcel, author of the book “Elder Rage, or Take My Father . . . Please! How to Survive Caring for Aging Parents”.
The affect Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related diseases has on an individual’s behavior can be devastating to their loved ones. The first step to coping with challenging behavior is to understand and accept that it is a result of the damage the disease causes in a person’s brain. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the early warning signs of Alzheimer’s are:
1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life
2. Challenges in planning or solving problems
3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure
4. Confusion with time or place
5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
6. New problems with words in speaking or writing
7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
8. Decreased or poor judgment
9. Withdrawal from work or social activities
10. Changes in mood and personality
During Caregiver Help Story Time, you’ll meet Birdie and Danny, two residents on a memory care unit where Dorothy Tucker worked as a nurse. (Be watching for her soon-to-be published memoir, “Out at the Home”, about her 30-year experience of working in nursing homes and on Alzheimer’s units.)
We also welcome back to the show, Peter Gelbwaks, Chairman of Gelbwaks Executive Marketing Corp. and America’s leading authority on long-term care insurance. We discuss options for paying for long-term care when a person can no longer qualify for a traditional coverage. Amazingly enough there are some creative solutions for even the toughest of long-term care insurance customers. If you have a question about long-term care insurance you can contact Peter at (800)-826-1686.
On a personal note, after more than a year of hard labor, my husband and I gave birth to CaregiverHelp.com. It is a video-based support program for caregivers that can be delivered in support group settings or to individuals in their homes and on mobile devices. Because of our own experiences of caring for family members through the final years of their lives, we feel compelled to help others survive the emotional stress of caring for those who can no longer care for themselves. Check it out. Watch the module on Guilt, and it you like it, you can sign up for a free week trial.