Diverse attention is now being given to Alzheimer's, a disease that is poised to become the nightmare of the 21st century without transformative breakthroughs in care, treatment, and prevention.
As the world goes to digital and infinite, it is the content that will survive long after we are gone. Or certainly past the time that we can remember that we actually already saw that movie. Or did we?
I want the mother back who was born sad and could not climb out of her sadness, but who managed a spectacular life. The woman who was born at the wrong time, married the wrong man and had the wrong children. The mother who gathered friends like an abundance of autumn leaves.
Eleven years ago, my mother would have opened this Mother's Day card and squealed with delight. But this year, on this special day she will gaze at it curiously and perhaps sing a quiet song only she can understand.
I will always wonder what life would have been like if my mother hadn't developed this devastating disease.
The nurses, aides, activity directors and other long-term care facility employees spend a tremendous amount of time with your loved one. They are the ones who help shower, dress and feed residents who need assistance with these tasks. The following list of things you should never do will help you avoid pitfalls that can occur when interacting with long-term care employees.
I hated Alzheimer's for invading our lives and stealing away my great-grandmother. I hated it for making my mother cry and forcing us all to confront the inescapable finale. But I needed this disease and my great-grandmother to tell me I did not know everything.
As fertility rates drop, and as life spans increase, older adults must continue to contribute to economic life. Politics aside, there is simply no way for the ballooning 60+ demographic to become dependent as previous generations have.
It isn't unusual for people with Alzheimer's to behave inappropriately in public at times. And often that leads to embarrassment for the caregiver. Here are some ways to deal with that embarrassment.
Recently, I have been visiting my old friend and literary colleague, Anita Cornwell, 89, who has dementia and is in a nursing home. She has been several stages of care at the same nursing home and is now in hospice. Anita is one of the lucky ones.
Hearing the word "intimacy'' can often make people uncomfortable, and many people do not like talking about it. Yet, it is an issue that surfaces in many ways in the journey of dementia, impacting relationships and adding challenges to the caregiving role.
Men are constantly trying to relate to what it is like being a mom... but we really have no idea. Let's start with early pregnancy and the potential...
The letters are addressed to "dearest" and "darling," both epithets I never heard either of my parents call the other. In one, my mother writes, "My dearest, I fly with you in my sleep" and then "I awake and look at the clock and estimate where you are."
We know that examining the human brain is essential for neurological disorders like Alzheimer's, but it is also key for vision diseases like macular degeneration, a major cause of visual impairment in the United States.
In those moments of recollection, it appears as if her very being becomes illuminated and the damaging nature of the disorder loses its hold on her mind. In some ways, it has brought a familial gift of sorts.
A debate about the expenses of Alzheimer's is welcome. Disagreement will attract attention, and for too long Alzheimer's has been relegated to the 'back burner.' But there's also a dirty little secret revealed by the RAND study: Alzheimer's is about the children. They're the ones who will have to pay for it.