Dementia is not so much a specific disease, as it is a loss of brain functioning resulting from an underlying disease such as Alzheimer’s. Dementia can result from a disease that causes a progressive deterioration of the brain that impairs the brain’s functioning. It may cause memory loss, inability to reason, personality changes, lack of insight, or loss of language skills. Some individuals with advanced dementia may experience personality and behavioral changes, delusions or vivid hallucinations.
While memory loss is a common symptom of dementia, memory loss alone does not mean your loved one has dementia. Everyone develops a certain amount of memory loss as they advance in age. For a person to be clinically diagnosed as having dementia, they must exhibit impairment of two or more brain function, some of these may include: memory loss, language skills, reasoning, or perception.
At Grand Brook every member of our staff has received training in memory care and to know how to provide the sort of patient, compassionate care for someone with dementia. We are here to provide your loved one 24-hour care and to free you to be an adult child, spouse or friend instead of being their primary caregiver.
Alzheimer’s Disease is the most common cause of dementia in people over 65. Although the disease usually does not appear until after 60, symptoms can show up as early as in someone’s 30s. In the early stages of AD, a loved one may experience memory impairment, lapses of judgment, and subtle changes in personality. As the disorder progresses, memory and language problems worsen and individuals begin to have difficulty performing activities of daily living.
Once a loved one reaches this stage, regular tasks like remembering to take your pills or remembering that you already took your pills become challenging. At this stage, the family can either move the loved one into the family’s home, hire full-time care or investigate assisted living communities like Grand Brook.
Dealing with the onset of dementia is challenging for even the closest of families. If you find that you and your loved one cannot handle this challenge alone, do not to hesitate to speak to one of our team members. We understand what you are going through. We are here for you.
Memory Care Educational Resources-
Dementia and Alzheimer ’s disease are never expected by any family. Developing a plan for your loved one is the first proactive step to prepare. Providing care for a loved one with Dementia is an experience that poses many challenges. While always rewarding, it is not always as fulfilling as we expect. Grand Brook wants to provide you with resources that will assist you with coping and caring for your loved one, your family and yourself.
Dementia Care Resources:
|Subject Category||Book Title||Description|
|Activities||Best friend’s book of Alzheimer’s activities Vol. 1 / D. Troxel & V. Bell, 2004||Best Friend’s Book of Alzheimer’s Activities describes 147 activities suitable for all care setting including home care for early and late stages. It contains formal and informal activities and suggested music and songs; activities that are adaptable; activities for unprogrammed times such as evenings, and those focusing on men and intergenerational groups.|
|Activities||Best friend’s book of Alzheimer’s activities Vol. 2 / D. Troxel & V. Bell, 2007||Volume 2 of Best Friend’s Book of Alzheimer’s Activities contains 149 new activities and themes for adults with dementia covering all stages in all care settings. Includes topics not easily found elsewhere like avoiding surprises and conversation tips. Creative art projects, interactive games, and evening activities are included and those for persons in their 50s and 60s like using the internet and community service.|
|Activities||Through the seasons : an activity book for memory-challenged adults and caregivers / C.R. Green & J. Beloff, 2008||Produced in large-format and color, the theme of Through the Seasons incorporates the five senses to encourage conversation and multi-sensory stimulation. The Let’s Talk About… and Let’s Try… questions and discussions are starting points to help create positive associations and enhance memory.|
|Activities||Shadowbox Press books – interactive books for memory-impaired adults / M. Schneider & D. Drapac, 2011||This collection of eight interactive books are designed to provide an easy and effective way to improve the quality of communication between caregivers and memory-impaired adults. Titles include: America – Bible Verses – Colors – Dogs and Puppies – Flowers – Fun and Games – Seasons – and Wild Animals. For more information visit www.shadowboxpress.com.|
|Alzheimer’s Disease||Alzheimer’s Disease guidelines pocketcard / California Workgroup on Guidelines for Alzheimer’s Disease Management, 2010||Based on the Guidelines for Alzheimer’s Disease Management listed under the Free category, this pocketcard includes assessment recommendations and instruments, algorithms for diagnosis and treatment, non-pharmacologic management recommendations, detailed drug tables with dosing, supportive organizations and more.|
|Alzheimer’s Disease||American psychiatric publishing textbook of Alzheimer’s and other dementias / M.F. Weiner & A.M. Lipton, 2009||For more technical and in-depth treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, the textbook provides clinical characteristics of Alzheimer’s, diagnostic evaluations, and treatments along with basic research of its causes in six parts with appendices. For more information on this comprehensive text, visit: http://psychservices.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/reprint/61/2/206-|
|Alzheimer’s Disease||Mayo Clinic on Alzheimer’s disease / R. Peterson, 2006||Mayo Clinic has produced a concise guide on Alzheimer’s, covering the basics of brain function; the causes, signs and symptoms of late-onset memory loss; how it is diagnosed along with the effects on the person, families, and caregivers. A quick guide for caregivers provides an overview of such topics as medical complications, home safety, managing medications, problem behaviors, and includes a glossary, resource list, and a narrative of one caregiver’s experience.|
|Bio-Autobiography||Ten thousand joys and ten thousand sorrows : A couple’s journey through Alzheimer’s (formerly Majesty of your loving : A couple’s journey through Alzheimer’s / O. Hoblitzelle, 2008||Aphasia and ultimately the complete loss of speech due to Alzheimer’s, along with a Buddhist approach to coping are the key focuses of this book for an English professor and his wife. The author remains candid about their increasing sense of disconnection and burdens of caregiving and with that provides useful suggestions for families with the disease.|
|Brain Health||Strengthen your mind : activities for people with early memory loss by K. Einberger & J. Sellick, 2008||Strengthen Your Mind contains dozens of activities and worksheets for persons with early memory loss across a broad range of interests to stimulate the mind, memories, and the senses.|
|Caregiver||36 Hour Day (4th edition or latest available) / N. Mace & P. Rabins, 2006||A comprehensive yet manageable guide on the care of those in all stages of Alzheimer’s. The writing is straightforward and combines practical advice with specific examples. It covers all aspects of care including the characteristic problems of dementia, independent living, daily care, behavior and mood, and health issues. It also focuses on the legal, financial, and emotional aspects of caring. Considered by many experts to be a “must” for the Alzheimer family.|
|Caregiver||Coach Broyles’ playbook for Alzheimer’s Caregivers / F. Broyles, 2009||Frank Broyles, former University of Arkansas athletic director, authored this book based on his experience caring for his wife. Spiral-bound for caregivers and written in the format of a football playbook, it is easy to read and understand. It offers a substantial collection of practical information and comes with a “Pocket Reference of Tips and Strategies” that a caregiver might need quickly.|
|Caregiver||Understanding difficult behaviors : some practical suggestions for coping with Alzheimer’s disease and related illnesses / R. Spence & L. White, 2007||Understanding Difficult Behaviors was written for families and professionals in all settings of care. The resource’s aim is to help caregivers understand that there can be many possible explanations for why challenging behaviors arise. It begins with why difficult behaviors occur and the importance of good communication. Next, the behaviors are laid out identically, each with definitions, possible psychological, medical, and environmental causes, coping strategies, and other considerations.|
|Children/Teen Pre-school – grade 3||Grandma’s Cobwebs / A. Frantti, 1998||Grandma’s Cobwebs is written from the viewpoint of Claire whose grandmother has come to live with her and her family. Claire’s experiences with her friends lead her to endure some hard lessons but in the end understand her grandmother’s Alzheimer’s better. The book includes an educational supplement of questions and answers for children about Alzheimer’s.|
|Children/Teen Pre-school – grade 3||What’s happening to Grandpa? / M. Shriver, 2004||Maria Shriver has written a full-color, hardcover children’s book about a grandparent with Alzheimer’s disease. Shriver walks a girl through acceptance and a beginning understanding of her Grandpa’s condition. This well-meaning book is clearly and lovingly written.|
|Fiction||Still Alice / L. Genova, 2009||Alice Howland, happily married with three grown children and a house on the Cape, is a celebrated Harvard professor at the height of her career when she notices a forgetfulness creeping into her life. As confusion starts to cloud her thinking and her memory begins to fail her, she receives a devastating diagnosis: early onset Alzheimer’s disease.” Description from Worldcat.org.|
|Historical||Forgetting (the) : Alzheimer’s portrait of an epidemic / D. Shenk, 2003||A journalist and occasional commentator for NPR gives a compelling account of Alzheimer’s disease from its scientific discovery and the common beliefs of the day to the present epidemic, splicing together evidence of the roles played by various scientists, policy makers, caregivers, and persons with the disease. Includes commentary on an array of historical and social issues related to Alzheimer’s and anecdotes about memory loss in famous persons.|
|Magazines / Journals||Preserving your memory: the magazine of health and hope||Preserving Your Memory is from the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation containing tips for caregivers, research updates, interviews, articles on healthy living, and crosswords and other games. Download for free at http://www.alzinfo.org/preserving-your-memory-magazine or subscribe to the print version.|
|Magazines / Journals||Take Care : self care for the family caregiver / National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA)||Take Care is a quarterly newsletter of the National Family Caregiver’s Association with evidence based research and practical caregiver advice. A “question and answer” column and resource information is included. Sign up or read past issues at http://www.nfcacares.org/caregiving_resources/takecare_newsleter.cfm|
|Magazines / Journals||Today’s Caregiver Magazine / Caregiver Media Group||Today’s Caregiver is a national magazine for caregivers that contains feature articles, interviews, book reviews, letters, poetry, advertisements and advertiser index. Specific articles are searchable from the search function. Download issues in PDF or subscribe at http://www.caregiver.com|
|Spiritual/Inspirational||Caregiving : the spiritual journey of love, loss and renewal / B. McLeod, 2000||Caregiving contains a blend of powerful real-life stories, medical and financial information, and discussion on topics such as depression, stress, housing, home care, and end-of-life. The author’s personal experience with caregiving and faith lays the groundwork for this book of spiritual and practical insight.|
|Spiritual/Inspirational||Guide to the spiritual dimension of care for people with AD and related dementia / E. Shamy, 2003||A resource and guide for professionals, volunteers and anyone involved in the pastoral care of persons with Alzheimer’s. The guide explores the physical and spiritual well-being, dignity and freedom of choice of the person, and how these can be fostered. It examines the volunteers own sense of empathy, understanding and support of the person and also presents practical advice on memory cueing and leading worship for those with dementia.|
|Spiritual/Inspirational||Spiritual journey of family caregiving / S. Karas, 2008||The author has chosen the content of her book based on personal experiences as a care consultant and as producer of a monthly caregiver newsletter. In an open and broadly defined framework, she offers advice and discussion on the spiritual aspects of caregiving that are informative and supportive. Recommended for persons with either a religious or non-religious background.|
|Spiritual/Inspirational||You are one of us : successful clergy/church connections to Alzheimer’s families / L. Gwyther, 1995||A 65-page, easy-to-follow book with suggestions for ways clergy and churches can help their members with Alzheimer’s disease and their families|
**Descriptions of books provided by Alzheimer’s Association’s Green-Field Library**