Periodically I will add posts here if the sources provide additioanl informaiton on how to think about and deal with Dementia/ Alzheimer's Disease.


SCROLL DOWN FOR TEXT and BIBLIOGRAPHY from DAI WEBINAR 2/22-23/2017. You can also find this information on my website:

Even though this blog is now dormant (see info below) there are many useful, insightful posts. Scroll back from the end or forward from the beginning. My guess is that you could spend a lot of time here and maybe learn or experience a thing or two about living with and loving someone with Dementia/Alzheimer's or maybe come away with the feeling that "you are not alone" in YOUR work with the same!

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Happy New Year 2016. With a new year comes new beginnings and sometimes endings. If I am personally progressing and if I am doing a good job in my grieving Gregory's death; if I have been able to learn my lessons in living and loving someone diagnosed with Dementia/ Alzheimer's; if I am to get on with my life ... I need to bring this Alzheimer's blog to an end since my writing has been dealing less with Dementia/ Alzheimer's and more with life after Dementia/ Alzheimer's.

Of course, I will always continue to work for and support fair treatment on behalf of people with Dementia/ Alzheimer's and may post here from time to time. Also, there are many wonderful posts here through which you may browse.

With this change, I will continue and reinvigorate my "michael a. horvich writes" blog which deals with grieving Gregory's death, life lessons, personal experiences, observations, memoirs, dreams, and humor in essay and poetry, as well as an attempt now and then at sharing a piece of fiction.

Please follow me there by clicking or click the link located on the right side of this page.

Finally, COMMENTS are always important to me and you can still comment on the posts on this blog! CLICK "Comments" and sign in or use "Anonymous." Leave your name or initials if you wish so I'll know it's you? Check the "Notify Me" box to see my reply to you.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Good Advice, Late in Coming & Easier Said ...

I subscribe to a number of memory care facilities e-mail blasts and on line support. (I am in the process of un-subscribing to many of them as they have become irrelevant.)
The following came in today and it did make me feel a little guilty. If I had read this prior to Gregory's psychotic episode would I have acted differently? Was I too demanding of Gregory with expectations for self-help set too high for his abilities? 
But guilt aside, I don't think so if only because most often he would figure out what to do without my help allowing him to maintain a sense of independence. Also, the incidence of his getting overwhelmed and upset and out of touch had increased exponentially over his last few weeks at home. He needed constant care and attention and often refused that care and attention.
However, it does make one think... It also makes it seem easier than it sounds.
Does your loved one ever seem to "lose it" over nothing? Overreactions to otherwise ordinary requests or events -- crying, cursing, pacing, or lashing out physically or verbally -- are called "catastrophic reactions." They can befall anyone with dementia and can be upsetting, even frightening, to a caregiver. One common cause: too many competing stimuli. If a room is noisy and the person is feeling rushed or is dealing with other strong emotions (embarrassment, frustration), and then tension spills into an argument, the result can be assorted behaviors that overwhelm the person and his or her ability to react more typically. Hard as it may be for you to stay calm, it really helps. If you can guess the trigger, remove it: Change the subject, change the activity, turn off the radio. If the person is particularly worked up and it's safe to leave him or her alone for a bit, do so. When things seem slightly calmer, forget it happened and then distract your loved one with a favorite activity or snack.
And then to end of a frightening note, I was talking to the husband of the daughter of my step Aunt Elaine. He is a rabbi and shared that in his congregation, a woman with Alzheimer's stabbed her husband to death with a kitchen knife, thinking he was an intruder in their home. Not to lighten the horror of it, how do you follow that one with a favorite activity or snack.

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