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Alzheimer`s Disease/caregiver to dementia patient

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QUESTION: Hello Cindy  I live with my sister  motherlaw She 81 years old  I am  her caregiver She has dementia She  is preety independent    phiscally health  is good ,but not mentally She has a daughter that is really good to her She takes her to appointments  does everything she can for her  But  sometimes she call her and she argue an  get her upset  and in tears   And i  feel like that is not right I don't know if the daughter feels like  she  cant belive Her mother  mind is slippping away And she cant do anything Or she not able to help her anymore  I just don't understand    I myself have already lost my mom And I know how hard it is to lose a parent I feel like im kind of middle  with this is my sisiter mother law I'am doing the best I can do takig care of her
I hope I explain  this to where you can understand it Thank you Carolyn

ANSWER: Hello Carolyn:  I'm very sorry to hear of your dilemma with your family.  It sounds to me as if her daughter is in denial about her mother's mental decline.  I think it would be good if you could sit down with her privately and have a conversation about what the doctor says on those visits.  Does she have a diagnosis of some type of dementia, like Alzheimer's?  If her daughter tells you she does not have a dementia diagnosis, I would then inform her of what you are seeing on a daily basis.  Give her examples of just how her mother's memory is affected, and how it is worsening.  She then needs to have a dementia work-up by her doctor, and possibly be put on medication to help delay the progression of the disease.  Also, it's important that her daughter begin to read about dementia.  Knowledge is power and she will be able to feel more comfortable once she knows what's going on and learns ways to cope better.  I know that it's extremely difficult to come to grips with something like this in your parent, but once you can do that, you begin to feel more in control.  I recommend my first book "Love, Laughter, & Mayhem - Caregiver Survival Manual For Living With A Person With Dementia" for her to read to learn how to better communicate with her mother.  There are many other books out there that she could benefit from as well.  She can learn that arguing with her mother is exactly the wrong thing to do, but she must be able to accept the fact that she has dementia first.  I wish you much luck Carolyn as you continue to help your family in this crisis.  

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QUESTION: Hello Cindy thank you for answering my question so quick Yes the daughter does know her mom has dementia And her mother has been diagnosed with it And is on medicine I read your answer And the daughter And I talk a little about her mom today And i   brought up about how   we  talk to a dementia patient If we try to tell how to do something  That get them more upset we have to be  more calm and attentive to them  And she open up to me said she just feel like her mother is slipping away  She losing her day to day Know that hard for her  And she says she try to explain her mom something the doctor told her And her mom doesn't remembers And that get her upset   I know it all on her shoulders  And she been under alot of stress other situations She told me she need to talk to her mom  try not to tell her what she need to do explain it  I told maybe  try a  softer  toner  voice   Thank you for your help and great information   I  will  tell  her  about your book  And I'm  going to get it for me It sound like a alot of laughs And with this disease that  helps  Carolyn

Answer
Hello again Carolyn:  I'm glad you were able to have that conversation with the daughter.  She will continue to be under a lot of stress so the sooner she learns how to more appropriately interact with her mother, the happier and more calm they both will be.  I also give family consultations via phone if she feels she would like to speak with me more in-depth about these issues (she could speak with me via email initially at keithc@mindinmemorycare.com). I recommend she join a caregiver support group where she should be able to find a lot of support and answers to some of her questions.  Bless you Carolyn for hanging in there with your family and trying to find some answers.  Cindy

Alzheimer`s Disease

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Cindy Keith, RN, BS, Certified Dementia Practitioner

Expertise

As a nurse and dementia consultant, I can answer most questions on all types of dementia. If I cannot answer your question, I will attempt to find someone who can. My passion is to help caregivers of people with dementia, which in turn helps all those wonderful elders with dementia live better lives. When caregivers are better educated, they are able to better care for themselves and their loved ones, so education is key to decreased stress levels and healthier, happier families.

Experience

I have worked as a nurse in various disciplines of nursing for over 20 years, most of which was with the elderly. I was a health care coordinator in a dementia dedicated assisted living facility for 4 years before I started my own business (M.I.N.D. in Memory Care) as a dementia consultant six years ago. As a dementia consultant, I help families nationwide through phone conference calls as they struggle to care for their loved ones with dementia.

Organizations
Alzheimer's Foundation of America Geriatric Interest Network Sigma Theta Tau International

Publications
Published "Love, Laughter, & Mayhem - Caregiver Survival Manual For Living With A Person With Dementia" which is a collection of stories about people with dementia I have known, loved and worked with. Every story has a lesson to teach and this book gently teaches family caregivers lessons about how to better care for their loved one, as well as themselves during their caregiving journey. Published "Love, Laughter, & Mayhem In Eldercare Facilities: The Master Key For Dementia Training" Created "Bringing Nurturing To Memory Care" staff dementia training video Created Ebook: "Hair Stylist's Helpful Tips For Working With People With Alzheimer's & Other Dementias"

Education/Credentials
Registered Nurse with Bachelor's degree in Nursing; Certified Dementia Practitioner; Author of 2 books and an ebook

Awards and Honors
Sigma Theta Tau National Honor Society of Nursing

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