Could a New Medication Be the Cause of Mom ’s Increased Falls?
Dear Carol: My mom had a lot of health problems in her life, so her prescription list is long. Yet, sure enough, after her last doctor visit, she got yet one more prescription. Now, just a week after starting this new medication, she’s fallen three times. She frequently fell before, so I don’t want to jump to conclusions, but this seems extreme. Could medications cause this? Is this okay that she has so many medications? – Worried About Mom’s Meds Continue reading on Egosancares for more infomation into medications that can contribute to older adults' fall risk: Purchase Minding Our Elders: Car...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 23, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Urinary Incontinence Not Uncommon Yet Stigma Remains
Social stigma. It’s a problem for people with nearly any condition that places them outside what is viewed as the norm, whether true or not. Incontinence is no different. Even though large numbers of adults have some form of incontinence, there’s still an unfortunate stigma attached to the condition. This is mostly because we think of a lack of bladder and/or fecal control as a problem that ends after infancy. The thinking goes that once we have been “potty trained,” we’ll be in control of these bodily functions for life. If we slip up, we are shamed. Fast forward a few decades. The reali...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 22, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Some Risky Behavior Might Be Necessary for Your Elder ’s Mental Health
Dear Carol: My dad, 72, has been adventurous all his life and that spirit doesn’t seem to be dampened by aging or even some health problems. He’s always loved snow skiing though thankfully he settles for just cross-country skiing on our flat trails. He still wants to ride his bike in all seasons except winter, and that scares me to death.  He says this is healthy. Yes, but what if he falls doing these things? How do I convince him that he’s risking life and limb with the way he lives? His brain seems to be working fine so I’m limited in how much I can intervene, but I live in fear that he will ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 21, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

UsAgainstAlzheimer ’s Survey Reveals Toll of Elder and Caregiver Isolation
Dear Readers: The most difficult aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic for many caregivers has been the isolation of older adults in homes and care facilities, as well as the closure of adult day facilities and other respite options. How it happened: A shocking wakeup call to the US announcing that this virus had arrived in the US was seeing it decimate the residents of a west coast nursing home. Soon after, COVID-19 was moving quickly through care facilities... Continue reading on Inforum for more insight into the UsAgainstAlzheimer's survey on how our elders and their caregivers are affected but the visitor's ban: Purchase Mi...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 20, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

20% Off First Order Of Egosan Incontinence Products!
If you're shopping for quality incontinence products that feature a discrete look and fewer changes to stay fresh, Egosan is the place. Use promo Code 20CAREGIVERS and SAVE 20% OFF your entire first order here on Amazon.                Related StoriesUsAgainstAlzheimer’s Survey Reveals Toll of Elder and Caregiver IsolationGetting Over the Guilt of Placing a Loved One in a Home5 Tips for Choosing a Nursing Home: An Insider View  (Source: Minding Our Elders)
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 19, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

What People With Dementia Wish Their Caregivers Knew
People living with dementia are the only ones who really understand what it’s like to live with their form of the disease, whether it’s Alzheimer’s or another type such as frontotemporal (FTD) or Lewy body (LBD). Sadly, the ability to communicate becomes compromised by dementia. That being said, care partners can, if we take time to search out the meaning behind their words or actions, continue to improve the care provided. Here are some tips that can help you. View the entire slideshow on HealthCentral for insight into what your loved one with Alzheimer's wishes a careg...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 19, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Getting Over the Guilt of Placing a Loved One in a Home
If we could control events, most of us would never want our elders to be so sick that they need the care of a nursing home, especially homes that are still operating in the dark ages, as some of them still are. Many homes have now moved forward into person-centered care, and reluctant caregivers often find their elders thrive, once they have adjusted. Still, it's hard. For many caregivers, placing an elder in a home spells failure on the part of the caregiver. Even when carers know they've done all they can, a subconscious nagging voice often tells them they are giving up on their parents or spouse. I'm here to tell y...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 17, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Dignity and Respect Might Be More Important Than Safety to Older Adults
What if living means risking injury? That is the question many adult children ask. Older bones don’t mend quickly and sometimes a break can be life-threatening. Pneumonia or flu can also be life-threatening. Some adult children would like to wrap their elders in bubble wrap and keep them safely in their favorite chair. But staying safe, yet not doing the things that one loves - at least those things one is still capable of doing - is no way to live the last years of life. Continue reading on HealthCentral to learn more about how to help your older adults by recognizing that a certain amount of risk can contribut...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 16, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

5 Tips for Choosing a Nursing Home: An Insider View
One of the most painful times for some families comes when their loved one can no longer thrive with in-home care and is in need of the skilled care that a nursing home can provide. Difficult as this time can be, emotion must be put aside so that necessary research can be conducted to find the best care facility possible. The internet can be useful for starting these searches and there are a couple of quite different ways to go about it. The Medicare site Nursing Home Compare is probably the logical first choice though, in my opinion, it should simply be one tool because, like all current tools, it is imperfect. ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 15, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

8 Tips for Choosing a Nursing Home: A Family ’s View
As a family caregiver of multiple elders, I needed a facility where more than one of my elders could live while I cared for others in various locations. My family was fortunate to find an excellent nursing home just a few blocks from my home. During the 15 years that my loved ones (different people at different times) lived in this facility, I learned a great deal about what makes a good nursing home tick. I interviewed a licensed nursing home administrator for her tips on selecting a nursing home not long ago, but as a family member, I’d like to add a few more ideas. Continue reading on HealthCentral for m...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 14, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

First Rule of Providing Comfort in Grief Is to Avoid Advice or Judgment
Photo credit Samuel Edwards  Dear Carol: My long-widowed mother, 83, died with COVID-19. I’m struggling with grief as most people would do in normal times. I have additional grief to deal with, though, because she died in a nursing home setting with only my dad allowed by her bedside. People try to offer condolences but then ruin the attempt by asking if I blame the facility. I don’t because they seemed to do all that they could, but even if I did blame them, isn’t this an odd time to ask?  Some people think that I’m over-reacting because mom was old and "would have died soo...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 13, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

9 Tips to Manage Stress for Better Health
Photo credit Jared Rice Increasingly, stress is considered a risk factor for dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s. Stress is also a risk factor for stroke and heart attack as well as a trigger for many diseases from arthritis to psoriasis. Obviously, limiting stress in our lives is a good idea. But how? Simply living what we call modern life seems to make stress the norm. View slideshow on HealthCentral for more insight into managing stress: Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook  Incontinence problems? Try Egosan premium underwear for discrete, dignified p...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 12, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Elder Abuse: How Seniors and Their Money Can Be Legally Hijacked
While we like to think that most seniors have family members or at least lifelong friends to help them through their last years, many don’t. The terms elder orphan or solo ager are often used to describe these older Americans. While many have planned for this time in their lives by hiring attorneys to oversee the legal issues surrounding their potential need for care, others may not have been so wise. These seniors could be a prime target for a guardianship company that can swoop in and—legally—take over their lives, including their finances. Even people who have children can run into this situation....
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 11, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Faith and Alzheimer's: An Interview
Photo credit Kari Fredrickson How can faith help both caregivers and people with dementia get through something that makes no sense even to those who believe in a loving God - or maybe especially to those who believe in a loving God? Many people have asked me this question. My own spiritual beliefs have been vital to my caregiving life, but I wanted to give people more depth than I could provide on my own. With that in mind, I asked Dr. Benjamin Mast, a licensed clinical psychologist, Associate Professor in Psychology & Brain Sciences and Geriatric Medicine at the University of Louisville author and also author of...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 10, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

How to Cope With an Older Adult's Complaining and Negativity
Photo credit Samanta Barba You took your mom to the doctor, and she’s upset with you because the appointment took too long. You helped Dad with the yard work, but he’s annoyed that you didn’t mow the grass in the right pattern. Why do older adults complain so much even though they have people working hard to make their lives easier? There are several potential causes for this behavior, and one simple question can help you get to the bottom of things: Has this person always been negative and prone to complaining, or is this a new occurrence? If a senior has always been abrasive, complaining may be the only...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 9, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

A Caregiver ’s Struggle: Balancing an Elder's Sense of Purpose with Their Safety
Photo credit Zubair Khan ...This post really struck a chord with me. Most seniors need to feel useful to enjoy a high quality of life. They maintain a sense of purpose by sticking to their everyday routines and engaging in activities and hobbies they enjoy. But if caregivers believe an elder’s actions are risky or downright dangerous, when should they step in? As caregivers, we walk a thin line between keeping our loved ones safe and helping to preserve their independence. One of my first experiences with this concept occurred with my elderly neighbor and first care recipient. Joe was in his 80s and lived in his own ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 8, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

A Story from the Sandwich Generation: Caring for Kids and Parents
...During the last few years of my caregiving, while my mother-in-law and my parents were still alive, my son was still having major health issues, and I was working full time, I read about the term “sandwich generation.” I remember thinking it was a clever concept, but it still didn’t occur to me that I was a member of this group. I was merely a caregiver and a mom. Maybe I didn’t have the time or the will to reflect on my own situation. That is the case with many caregivers. In fact, when I give presentations to groups of caregivers and professionals, I always stress self-identification. Care...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 7, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Dementia Diagnosis Begins with the Elimination of Reversible Factors
Photo credit Joe Hepburn Dear Carol:  I’m worried about my mother-in-law, age 93, who has become so forgetful that she can no longer put together a simple supper without major ingredients missing or misused. She used to be a superb cook, so this is extra distressing. My father-in-law dutifully eats anything she makes without complaint, making excuses in private about why a particular dish was so strange. Also, even before the COVID-19 isolation, she was getting lost on the way to or from her long-time neighborhood grocery store. I’ve been pressuring my husband to talk with his dad and tell him that Mom nee...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 6, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

8 Tips for Choosing a Nursing Home: A Family ’s View
As a family caregiver of multiple elders, I needed a facility where more than one of my elders could live while I cared for others in various locations. My family was fortunate to find an excellent nursing home just a few blocks from my home. During the 15 years that my loved ones (different people at different times) lived in this facility, I learned a great deal about what makes a good nursing home tick. I interviewed a licensed nursing home administrator for her tips on selecting a nursing home not long ago, but as a family member, I’d like to add a few more ideas. Continue reading on HealthCentral for m...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 5, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

When Parents With Dementia Don't Realize They Need Help
Your once-easy-going dad now thinks you’re stealing from him. Your ever-frugal mom is buying odd things she finds on the Internet. You know that these types of personality changes can be signs of dementia, yet when you offer to help, you're vehemently rebuffed. How do you convince your cognitively fragile parents to accept support? How hard do you push? There’s no easy answer, but there are steps you can take. Continue viewing slide show on HealthCentral for more insight into helping parents who with dementia won't accept help: Carol is the Candid Caregiver Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Shar...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 4, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Egosan Celebrates Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
Most younger men don’t spend a lot of time considering the health of their prostate. However, around the age of 50, they’ll likely find that their physicians want to check out prostate health both physically and through blood work known as a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test.  The PSA is not a perfect test, but it’s still used to help detect prostate cancer since there aren’t many alternatives. National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month is meant to increase the knowledge about possible prostate problems and make certain that men get checked out regularly. Continue reading on Egosancares b...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 3, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

The Many Types of Incontinence, the Causes, and Management Tips from An Expert
Incontinence is common in older adults and people with certain disabilities. Sadly, embarrassment over being an adult who cannot completely control urinary or bowel functions makes managing this health situation more challenging. Egosan works to help people understand that while incontinence is inconvenient, it’s not worth suffering over, either physically or emotionally. To further our effort to educate people about incontinence, Mica Phillips Aeroflow’s Healthcare Director of Urology stepped in to provide basic but important information about the causes of incontinence. Aeroflow Healthcare is a durable medica...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 2, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Can What We Eat Affect Incontinence?
While we are all focusing on the COVID-19, caregivers are exquisitely aware that life goes on. It's just more challenging than ever. Situations such as dementia, heart ailments, and incontinence do not go away whether your loved one is in a care facility or at home with you. In fact now, as countless people have become home caregivers with little or no respite because of COVID-19, reliable caregiving information is even more vital than in the past. Continue reading on Egosancares for more insight into how people can learn to live with the inconvenience of incontinence: Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Shar...
Source: Minding Our Elders - September 1, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

What Could Cause Dad ’s Personality To Change Overnight: Medications? A UTI?
Dear Carol: My dad, 86, lives with me. He has an academic’s personality, so we’ve often talked about different issues that spanned all disciplines. He’s always been gentle and kind and rarely criticized anyone unless that criticism was warranted. Dad's had significant health issues these last few years, which is why, after Mom died, we decided to live together. Suddenly, I can’t do anything right. Uncharacteristically, he's started yelling at people who try to help him. What's going on? – Scared Continue reading on Egosancares for more insight into what could cause an older adult's person...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 31, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Respecting Older Parents' Autonomy More Productive Better Than Demanding Change
Photo credit Aaron Andrew Dear Carol: I moved my 81-year-old dad in with me so that I could keep an eye on him after he had a stroke last year and have kept him with me because of COVID-19. He’s doing very well, partly because he has some in-home physical therapy where he happily cooperates. When we had some general in-home help for a while after his stroke, he also did everything they asked, including eating the food that they suggested. When I insist on the same things, he shrugs me off or says he’ll think about it. I love him and we get along quite well. Why will he do what he needs to do for other people an...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 30, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Caregiving Pain: Mom Forgot My Name
Dear Candid Caregiver: My heart is breaking! My mom and I have always been close, even shopping together and having lunch quite regularly, so it was devastating when she was diagnosed with early on-set Alzheimer’s at age 53. Mom seems to have a particularly aggressive form of the disease, so just three years down the road she’s now judged to be in the late stage of her disease. Two years ago, I quit college to move back home and take care of her, which I was glad to do under the circumstances. Many changes have been challenging, of course, particularly six months ago when it became necessary to move her in...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 29, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Letter To Myself: On Becoming a Compassionate Caregiver
Dear Carol: How could you know that your offer to pick up some groceries for Joe after his wife’s funeral would lead to five years of daily visits? How could you know that you would become his primary caregiver: taking him to the Telephone Pioneers of America dinners, riding with him in the ambulance after you found him with a dislocated shoulder, taking him, along with your kids, on multiple 150-mile jaunts to visit his 90-year-old sister; helping him through cataract surgery and recovery, the aftermath of his broken hip, his last breath. No, you couldn’t know this was your future. You’d simply offe...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 28, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Embarrassment Over Incontinence Can Be Overcome with Support
Dear Carol:  I’m a 65-year-old man who had prostate surgery for cancer that left me incontinent. While I’m certainly grateful that the surgery stopped my cancer, I’m really embarrassed by my incontinence. I hate even doing things with my buddies because I feel like a baby who hasn’t been toilet trained. How do I learn to be happy about my new post-cancer life? Classic cars are my thing and I want to join the guys at the car club while we restore them, but I just can’t make myself go away from the house. My wife says that I just have to get on with it, but how do I do that? – Cl...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 27, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

What You Should to Avoid When Caregiving for Someone Living With Alzheimer's
Most of us who have cared for someone living with dementia have tried our best to determine how best to provide that care. We research. We try putting ourselves in their place. We do our best to be patient because we understand that they can’t help their having the disease. Still, we are human and we make mistakes. While we shouldn’t wallow in guilt when we do make mistakes as a care partner, there are situations that we should try extra hard to avoid. Here are nine of them. View the full slideshow on HealthCentral for more insight into what caregivers should avoid doing when they are providing care for so...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 26, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Could Your Body Language Be Making Your Loved One Even More Anxious?
Dear Candid Caregiver: My parents were always open about their long-term plans for retirement, saying that they’ve worked hard and retirement was going to be the payoff. Travel was huge on the horizon. Now, my dad has been diagnosed with mixed dementia, which, in his case, means Alzheimer’s and possibly Lewy body dementia, so their dreams are pretty much canceled. Mom is, for the most part, a good caregiver, but she’s resentful about what happened, and why wouldn’t she be? She has a right to these feelings except that her resentment shows through to Dad through her body language as well the ton...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 25, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Caregiving and the Ever-Present Guilt: Enough Already!
  Photo credit Edward Cisneros ...You're visiting Mom in her apartment and you've been there long enough to do laundry and clean up the bathroom and kitchen. You visit a bit. She is watching her favorite show on TV, which you hate, but she wants your company. You've got kids coming home, but not for a while. Would a little white lie be okay? I mean, as part of the sandwich generation, is it awful to want to have a half-hour between Mom and kids; a half-hour for yourself to regain some sense of tranquility? Continue reading on Agingcare for more insight into why caregivers feel so guilty so often: Purchase Minding Our ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 24, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Nursing Home Changed Mom ’s Medications Without Telling Me
Photo credit Vladimir Soares Dear Carol: My mother has been in a nursing home for over a year due to back-to-back strokes. She’s only 74, so this has been a hard adjustment for everyone. She has minor dementia symptoms due to vascular dementia which I’m told is common after strokes. My problem is that during a video chat the floor nurse casually mentioned a reaction that mom had from a medication change that I hadn’t been told about before. I try not to be overbearing when it comes to Mom’s care, but since I haven't been allowed to see her close up, it seems more important than ever that I&rsqu...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 23, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Considering a Nursing Home for a Loved One? What to Know
The people we love and care for often reach a point where we can no longer be sole care providers and we need to look at options. This is painful because up to this point we’ve likely been partners in their care but haven’t had to make forceful decisions. Now, things have changed. Because so many people have a negative view of nursing homes, the idea of going to a care facility terrifies many older people, and being the person to make this decision can be agony. View slideshow on HealthCentral for more insight into what caregivers need to consider before placing a loved one in a care home: Purchase Minding Our ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 22, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

12 Tips to Help Spousal Caregivers Through Hard Times
While family members providing care for loved ones share many issues, there’s a different emotional dynamic for spousal caregivers than adult children caring for a parent. Betsy E. Wurzel, spousal caregiver for her husband Matt Sloan, can attest to this. Matt was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease (EOAD), at age 56. I was aware of Betsy’s background and asked her about how different spousal caregiving is from caring for a parent, and what this means for their future: Continue viewing slideshow on HealthCentral for more insight into how spousal caregivers can get through hard times: Purchase Mi...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 21, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Fecal Incontinence Can Be a Side Effect of Various Conditions Including Constipation
Many conditions can carry as a side effect some degree of fecal incontinence, so if you are affected, or someone you care for is struggling with the issue, having a better understanding of the potential causes could help ease the way toward acceptance. Fortunately, fecal incontinence is not nearly as common as urinary incontinence. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says that in a study involving older adults, 25 percent had moderate, severe, or very severe urinary leakage but only about eight percent had moderate, severe, or very severe bowel leakage. Still, that is not an insignificant number so the caus...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 20, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Caregiver Burnout: How to Cope
My mom passed two years ago and my dad hasn’t done well since. Recently he had a stroke. My sister, who lives 1,000 miles away, came out for mom’s funeral, and she also visited for a few days after dad’s stroke, but she has a job and a family and couldn’t stay long. Now, dad’s been diagnosed with vascular dementia. Realistically, I’m the sole caregiver. I have two teenaged children, a husband who is, so far, supportive, and a job. I’m already beginning to feel burned out after just a few months. What can I do to help myself get through this and still take care of my dad? — Fr...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 19, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

End-of-Life Care: ER Doctor Answers Our Questions
Emergency-room doctor Kevin Haselhorst had an epiphany while he tried valiantly to save an elderly man who’d been through one-too-many traumas. His book, “Wishes To Die For: A Caregiver’s Guide to Advance Care Directives,” was the first step toward a new advocacy. Dr. Haselhorst continues to work toward helping people understand the importance of healthcare directives and the ability to make their own decisions about end-of-life care. Curious about more of Dr. Haselhorst’s views, the Candid Caregiver contacted him through email for the following interview. Continue reading on HealthCentra...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 18, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Helping Older Adults Who Won ’t Accept In-Home Caregivers
Photo credit Matteo Vistocco Hiring in-home care for my elderly neighbor, Joe, was quite an ordeal. The company we chose and their professional caregivers were great, but the quality of care they provided wasn’t the issue. The problem was that Joe resented anyone but me helping him. He locked one in-home care aide out of his home, let another inside but was rude to her, and thoroughly enjoyed one young man but only because they could discuss golf together. I’m not the first family caregiver to struggle with getting a senior to accept home care. Families hire these services to provide valuable respite ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 17, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Caregiver Needs to Protect Herself from Mother ’s Misplaced Anger
Photo credit Amin Lofti Dear Carol: My mother, age 94, has smoked her whole life, carried too much weight, eaten junk, wouldn’t exercise, and wouldn’t even take a vitamin. Late last year she had a stroke that left her physically disabled to the point that she needs to be in a nursing home. So far, she shows no sign of dementia, but she’s angrier than ever because of her situation. The care staff is angelic. I don’t know how they do it because I’m a mess. I’m almost glad that the COVID situation has kept us separate because on video she’s usually distracted enough to not let loose h...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 16, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Breaking the News That a Loved One is Going on Hospice Care
Photo credit Abigail Keenan When the paperwork was finally signed to get hospice care for my dad, I was grateful. There would now be a routine of care for him where he could live in comfort. That's all he really wanted. However, I knew that breaking this news to Mom would be difficult. She'd have to finally admit, and somehow accept, the fact that Dad was dying. After all, hospice care is for people diagnosed as terminally ill. Continue reading on Agingcare for more insight into how accepting the reality that someone is going on hospice care can be a difficult transition: Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 15, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Should You Quit Your Job to Care for Your Elderly Parent?
Photo credit Edward Cisneros As our parents age and need more assistance, most adult children do what they can to help. For many, the first step is a weekly stop by Mom and Dad’s home to assess the situation and perhaps help with some chores and errands. Often, these check-ins increase in frequency until it becomes a routine part of each day. Family caregivers typically look into community services and in-home care for assistance. They research adult day care centers and assisted living communities. However, most seniors are adamant about wanting to remain in their own homes ... Continue reading on Agingcare for more...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 14, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

5 Questions to Determine the Impact of Caregiving
Photo credit Meghan Holmes When aging parents, or an ill family member need help, many of us dive into caregiving with full hearts and little forethought. Sometime later, we come to realize that we’ve been in this role for months or even years and that it has changed us and our lives in striking ways. As a family caregiver, you must take a step back and have a frank talk with yourself. Doing some honest soul searching can help you sort out your priorities, set goals for your loved one’s care, and establish boundaries that will safeguard your own physical and mental health. Continue reading on Agingcare for more...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 13, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Geriatric Care Managers Can Help Busy Caregivers
Geriatric care management is a rapidly growing field in the eldercare industry. As most caregivers know, researching and coordinating all the care options and resources available for aging loved ones is a never-ending process. Many would rather use their precious time visiting with family members or seeing to their own health instead of filling out paperwork, juggling appointments, and searching for sources of financial assistance. This is where geriatric care managers (GCMs) come in. What Is a Geriatric Care Manager? Geriatric care managers (also known as Aging Life Care Professionals or ALCPs)... Continue reading on...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 12, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Balancing an Elder's Sense of Purpose with Their Safety
Photo credit Zubair Kahn ...As caregivers, we walk a thin line between keeping our loved ones safe and helping to preserve their independence. One of my first experiences with this concept occurred with my elderly neighbor and first care recipient. Joe was in his 80s and lived in his own home. He was completely deaf, so to communicate with each other, he would speak and I would write on a large legal pad. One day, I hurried into his house at my typical visiting time and immediately sensed that something was off. Joe would usually sit at his kitchen table waiting for me to arrive, but this time there was no sign of him...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 11, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Superior Products and Personal Attention to Customers: That Is Egosan
...“My mom Lena Wilson just passed, and I was her caregiver at home along with some other caregivers for over the 10 years she had Alzheimer’s. It has only been a short time since her death, but I really miss her. “We were able to take care of her at home (as opposed to a nursing home) due to a couple of factors. First, we had great caregivers at home. “Second, we were able to get her the proper supplies and equipment at home. This includes Amazon (where we could get lots of supplies) and Egosan. My Mom used Egosan maxi... Continue reading on Egosancares for more insight into how this comp...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 10, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Coping with Older Adults Who Won ’t Accept In-Home Caregivers
Photo credit Behard Grossgasteiger Hiring in-home care for my neighbor, Joe, was quite an ordeal. The company we chose and their caregivers were great, but the quality of care wasn't the issue. The problem was that Joe resented anyone but me helping him. He locked one caregiver out of his home, let another in but was rude to her, and thoroughly enjoyed one young man, but only because they could discuss golf together. Families hire home care to provide respite and quality care for seniors, but what is a caregiver to do when their loved one refuses to cooperate with this new addition to their care plan? Continue re...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 5, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Causes of Adult Incontinence are Numerous Yet Stigma Persists
Social stigma. It’s a problem for people with nearly any condition that places them outside what is viewed as the norm, whether true or not. Incontinence is no different. Even though large numbers of adults have some form of incontinence, there’s still an unfortunate stigma attached to the condition. This is mostly because we think of a lack of bladder and/or fecal control as a problem that ends after infancy. The thinking goes that once we have been “potty trained,” we’ll be in control of these bodily functions for life. If we slip up, we are shamed. Fast forward a few decades. The reali...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 4, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Grieving Before Death: Alzheimer's or Terminal Illness Grief
Photo credit Melanie Wasser Nearly everyone involved in caring for an ill or aging loved one is experiencing some degree of grief. However, we don’t usually identify the complex emotions we’re experiencing as such. When you have a parent or spouse who used to be strong and capable but begins to ask for a little assistance, it’s no big deal, right? You’re happy to help. But deep down, there’s a knot in our hearts. We’re grieving various kinds of loss, including the loss of function that comes with advancing age or a chronic medical condition. Generally, these changes are subtle and t...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 3, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Eighty-Six-Year-Old Mom Refuses to Accept In-Home Caregivers
Ani Kolleshi Dear Carol: My mom, is 86 and has dementia. She wants to continue to stay in her home, but she needs help with daily care. I work full time, so in-home care seems to make sense. Mom agrees with the principle, but when I talk about hiring people, she says she doesn’t want strangers coming into her home. She isn’t safe in the shower alone. She can’t clean well. She doesn’t eat well even though I provide her with easy to warm up meals. She also needs reminders to take her medications. I understand her not wanting strangers coming in.  I also understand not wanting to admit she should ...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 2, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs

Tips To Help You Stay Positive While Caregiving
Dear Candid Caregiver: My dad is in the middle stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Meanwhile, my mom is recovering from cancer surgery, and the prognosis isn’t good. I’m trying my best to be a good caregiver for both of them and stay positive while doing it, but it’s hard. I recognize that we’re fortunate in that my parents are able to hire an agency that supplies a rotation of in-home caregivers. The other side of it is that I have a brother and a sister, both living hundreds of miles away from our parents and me, so they can’t help out much. They try to be sympathetic and apprecia...
Source: Minding Our Elders - August 1, 2020 Category: Geriatrics Authors: Carol Bradley Bursack Source Type: blogs