Stress is the Name of the Game
Everything I am providing you with, is to make your life as a caregiver easier. If you don’t know, I have been an executive director for Assisted Living communities for over a decade. I am on the speakers bureau of the Alzheimer Association, and even had a major organization ask me to make a stress management CD for caregivers – using Guided Imagery a couple of years ago.
(Try it out:Track One: English Garden )
I intimately know your stress. I see the burnout and I read the statistics that say up to 50% of caregivers die before the person they providing care for. Stress. Studies show that long-term stress increases your risk for stroke, heart attack, diabetes, autoimmune deficiencies.
If having a comprehensive assessment with all your loved one’s information on document make life easier, great! If listening to soothing stress management recording once a day lowers your blood pressure, great.
What I am saying is, your task is difficult, and as hard as it is it believe in this world, with everyone out for themselves, I am here to help. I enjoy helping people and seeing the relief or gratitude in their eyes. Believe it or not, it cost me almost nothing to do this. So please accept what you find here, and if it helps I only ask that you write and tell me so.
Options for Caregivers
There come a time in the progression of this illness, when you might have to make difficult choices. Probably the worst, is considering placement. This is a very tough decision, and is different for everyone. Factors include: burnout, finances, care needs, and ultimately what is best for your loved one.
Granted, no one loves your mom or dad like you do. But there may be a time when you cannot provide them with enough care or stimulation. While you cannot stop the progress of this illness, you CAN slow it down. Assisted living communities have given researchers the evidence, that with daily regime of exercise (fine motor skills, gross motor movement) and stimulation (verbal, visual and auditory) you can slow it down!
Personal reasoning aside, choosing a community can be a difficult process. And you only want to have to do it once. Picking the wrong one and then going through the process of moving again can be very time consuming.
As an executive director of assisted living communities, I can tell you about “referral agencies”. They are great because you give them all your information (locations, price range, etc.), and they will help you by narrowing down your choices. Best of all they are free to you! (We end up paying them for the referral, but its worth it to us). In all my years, one national company stands head and shoulders above the others: A Place For Mom
What you don’t know, is some ‘free’ referral agencies, will give you a short list, but blast your information to every home in the city, and you end up being bombarded with marketing calls. They do this so that they are assured that no matter where you go, they will make money. A Place For Mom does not do that. They are very personable, and efficient. They will hold your hand through the whole process and never let go. I think I speak for a lot of administrators and families when I say this.