In my last post, I listed three things that I often wish more caregivers knew, about getting better medical care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or another dementia.
In this post, I’ll list two more important things for dementia caregivers to know. Again, this will be an excerpt from Paula Spencer Scott’s book “Surviving Alzheimer’s: Practical tips and soul-saving wisdom for caregivers.”
But first, a quick word on Paula’s book, which as best I can tell, is really unique. On their own, her tips on handling common everyday problems — such as personality changes, memory glitches, difficult behaviors, and personal care issues — are good enough that I’d recommend her book to family caregivers because I love the practical “Why This, Try This” format she provides. She also offers solid advice on managing caregiver stress and relationship tensions.
Yet what’s really nifty about Paula’s book, is that she combines these practical tips with a section called “The Big Picture: Insights & Inspiration from the Wizards of Alz.” This is a compilation of twelve condensed expert interviews, and yours truly was very honored to be included.
Each expert has a different contribution to make to dementia caregiving. Whereas I focus on how caregivers can better manage the health issues, Bob DeMarco offers advice on “stepping into Alzheimer’s world,” Anne Basting provides guidance on using art therapy and storytelling, Teepa Snow suggests ways to decode the secret language of dementia, Leeza Gibbons encourages caregivers to not forget about themselves, and researcher Dr. Richard Isaacson provides cutting-edge advice on diet and dementia. (To see the full list of experts, you can preview the table of contents here, by clicking “look inside.”)
This creates a really rich and diverse package of perspectives, insights, and practical advice. So if you are looking for help surviving as a caregiver to someone with Alzheimer’s or another dementia, I encourage you to consider Paula’s book. (Note: Paula was my editor at Caring.com, and I also consider her a personal friend. But I wouldn’t tell you I recommend her book unless I really did like it.)
And now, back to what you can do, to get better healthcare for a loved one with dementia.