Family & Relationships

Choice, Voice & Bodily Autonomy in Dementia Care

As dementia interferes more and more with their daily life, people with dementia can become frustrated, angry, or depressed as they feel their sense of identity slipping away.

This can occur when their symptoms prompt major life changes, such as an unwelcome retirement, they stop driving and must rely on others, or they stop participating in social activities or hobbies they enjoy – whether out of necessity, embarrassment, or fear of making mistakes in front of friends.

Coordinating a Network of Care

Cheering on our favorite football teams this fall is getting us thinking: Does your loved one have an all-star care team?

To keep your number one fan in optimum health as they progress through the stages of dementia, their care team roster could include friends and family, doctors, nurses, physical therapists, pharmacists, memory care and other specialists, as well as a care coordinator. Depending on your loved one’s needs, that care coordinator could be a professional, or it could be you.

Decades of Love & Delicate Conversations: Discussing A Spouse's Memory Loss

Husbands and wives are often the first to spot changes in their spouse’s memory, behaviors and cognitive function. And it’s often they who must initiate the difficult conversations about possible memory loss. Acknowledging your partner’s changing behaviors or memory issues can be emotional and distressing for you both, yet it's essential to address your concerns early so interventions may be given and plans made that will honor your spouse’s care, legal and financial wishes in the future.

Finding Their Voice: 7 Tips to Help Children Discuss Memory Loss

When a grandparent starts showing Alzheimer’s symptoms, children may feel scared, angry, anxious, stressed, frustrated ... just like adults but without the benefits of emotional maturity and life experience. Giving each kid a safe, healthy way to express and process their feelings is critical to their emotional health and relationship with their grandparent moving forward.

For Better or For Worse: Renewing Connection with Cognitive Decline

When one partner is diagnosed with dementia, couples often fear that their relationship – and their decades-long identity as a couple – will be completely lost to the disease. However, while it's true the spousal relationship will change, it’s also true that couples can spark quality connections and enjoy a loving relationship even as dementia progresses, memories fade, and it becomes more difficult to communicate verbally.

Friendship Goals and Dementia: 6 Tips for Maintaining a Relationship

If you have a friend or family member who has recently been diagnosed with dementia, you may be unsure of the changes and challenges that may be coming. While dementia affects the person diagnosed, it also affects those closest to them in a number of ways. For example, over time, your loved one may not remember who you are, be able to participate in the same activities you both used to do together or be able to enjoy outings as you did once before. Fortunately, there are plenty of effective ways to maintain your relationship in spite of dementia.

Healthy Roles and Relationships: Connecting with Your Loved One with Dementia

When a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia, it can be hard to know how to have a healthy relationship. Between communication and connecting with your loved one, it can become difficult to either be on the same page or maintain the close relationship you had before. Fortunately, with a few changes, it can be easier to connect with your loved one with dementia.

Honoring the Love: Remembering the Couple Behind the Memory Loss

There's no denying that dementia changes spousal relationships, but you can find ways to connect as a couple. Simple Celebrations Can Keep Love Alive Your celebrations don’t have to be grand. For occasions like Valentine’s Day, anniversaries and birthdays, a bouquet of flowers or a thoughtful gift can brighten your partner’s day and improve the mood and energy in your home.

How to Improve Communication with Loved Ones with Memory Loss

When a loved one has Alzheimer’s disease or another form of memory loss, communication can become difficult. The changes that Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of memory loss cause in the brain can create the potential for trouble speaking, issues portraying thoughts and lack of understanding. When this occurs, it can be hard to know what to do or how to approach communication with your loved one; however, understanding how communication may change, how your loved one will be affected and how to improve communication can help both yourself and your loved one with memory loss greatly.

Marriage & Dementia Care: A Sensitive Coupling

When you promised to stick by your spouse in sickness and in health, becoming their full-time caregiver was probably far from your mind or far in the future. If a dementia diagnosis has brought that vow to the forefront of your relationship, you may be experiencing new strains on your marriage or resentments in your caregiver-recipient relationship.