Your life is going along fine, and then one day everything changes. Your mother falls and breaks a hip. Your dad gets lost on his way home from the grocery store. The doctor confirms that the shaking in your husband’s hand and the expressionless look on his face are undeniable symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease. Whatever the event or diagnosis, you are suddenly thrust into the role of a caregiver.
Nothing in your background has prepared you for this. You don’t have the time to take on this new role. You know you’re going to need help, but don’t yet know what kind of help. Who do you call? Where do you look for answers? If you go to the Internet, what keywords do you enter?
Becoming a caregiver is a frightening experience, and it’s one that is becoming quite familiar to the 65.7 million Americans who are providing unpaid care for an aging, chronically ill, or disabled loved one. Fortunately, there are organizations, associations, and websites that provide a wealth of information and support.
Join us as we talk with Melora Jackson, Training & Program Specialist for the southern half of Mississippi’s Division of Alzheimer’s Disease & Other Dementia, under the Department of Mental Health in Long Beach, Mississippi. We talk about the importance of education and how Alzheimer’s conferences can provide information, inspiration and support for family caregivers.
We also visit with Greg Miller, CEO of MagicKitchen.com about how it is possible to provide healthy, nutritious meals for individuals with special dietary needs and restrictions without ever having to go to the grocery store.
Finally, be sure to visit CaregiverHelp.com, our video-based caregiver support program for help coping with the anger, guilt, depression and grief often associated with caregiving. We also provide information on understanding and managing dementia-related challenges behaviors, along with a framework for developing your own personal self-care plan. You can sample the entire guilt module, and if you like what you see, you can sign up for a free one-week trial membership. And, as always, if you have a question you’d like to ask, a story you’d like to share, or a rant you’d like to get off your chest, connect with me on Facebook or send me email. I’ll do my best to respond.