As someone who has an insatiable desire to know and do everything, I've also come to find three insights particularly helpful. Rather than concrete actions, they serve more as mindsets or perspectives to take on all that is available to us now -- and stay centered on what truly matters to us as individuals.
Dementia, Alzheimer's, senility, forgetfulness. All of these words point to an experience. But do they point to the same one? Are they different? Are ...
Alzheimer's is, above all, an insidious illness. It begins with very mild symptoms -- things we all do from time to time, such as forgetting to turn off the stove, temporarily forgetting an acquaintance's name, or misplacing the car keys. But for the person with dementia, these events will become more frequent, and with time, more serious symptoms will appear.
There is a widespread public perception that dementia can lead to a loss of a sense of self, but this notion has not been rigorously investigated. One way to study this is to look at actual cases of brain degeneration, and see if the damage is linked to identity changes perceived by others. Do people with specific kinds of brain damage become no longer themselves?
Facing the Herculean challenges of caregiving requires all the strength you can muster, including spiritual strength. It has been our experience that caregivers who develop what we would call "spiritual intentionality" are better able to face these challenges and retain their joy and hope than those who seek to go it alone, fueled by denial, anger and resentment.
"It's a very difficult disease," Kelso explained. "Seeing my grandmother go through it was difficult for sure, but also watching my father show up to the hospital and she could no longer recognize him, it's very difficult for those that have the disease but also those around them."
My wife, Clare, is dying. Slowly, but surely, Alzheimer's disease is taking Clare from me. Living in a lockdown dementia unit of an assisted living re...
Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw once said, "Life is no brief candle ... It is a so...
I loved Ed, but I just didn't think I could tolerate it anymore. Yet, I couldn't possibly end our relationship, either. First, because I loved him too much. Second, it would have been morally reprehensible. He couldn't have gotten along on his own for even one day.
We all appreciate the elegance of simple solutions to complex problems. But we know too that simplicity can often masquerade as truth, hiding a more nuanced reality. Such is the case with inflammation, where pseudoscience, exaggerated claims, false promises, and dangerous oversimplification have dominated for too long.
Comparing diseases is an uncomfortable subject. Whichever one we, or someone we love, has, (even the common cold) is the worst at the time. But some diseases do offer more hope than others. The Alzheimer's Association reminds us that of the top ten causes of death in America, Alzheimer's is the only one that cannot be prevented, cured or slowed.
On Wednesday, 2016 presidential candidate Jeb Bush revealed that his mother-in-law, Josefina Gallo Esquivel, is living with Alzheimer's. He asked for people to email him if they have ideas or suggestions about how to wipe out this deadly disease. I have a few.
One night as we were sitting together in a room full of immediate family, she leaned over to me and whispered, "I don't know who any of these people are." That included me, but it didn't stop her from confiding in me. I just laughed, and she did too.
Evaluating a nursing home for your loved one is as fraught as buying your first home, but without any of the joy. Here's quick advice for when you are doing your own evaluation:
I arrived for my first half day of volunteering to visit three ladies with Alzheimer's at Brookdale Senior Living's Clare Bridge memory care facility ...
While group members grieve the changes that Alzheimer's disease has brought to their lives and relationships, they find that they are no longer quite so alone in facing life's daily challenges, losses and decisions. They are part of a new community of men and women who intuitively understand their struggle.