Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Shop Marshalls Take a Dollar Campaign!

For the third year in a row, Marshalls will be raising awareness and funds for the fight to end Alzheimer's. Shoppers who visit a store March 1 through March 14 can donate
$1, $5 or $10 to the Alzheimer's Association at checkout. We can’t think of a better time to shop!

Monday, February 23, 2015

African American History Month

February is African American History Month! From the beautiful mind of poet Zora Neale Hurston to the musical creativity of musician Miles Davis, there is an abundance to celebrate! That's why we want to raise awareness this month in particular.

Did you know that African Americans are at a greater risk for Alzheimer's disease? As a matter of fact, African Americans are two times more likely to develop late-onset Alzheimer's and are less likely to have a diagnosis of their condition. So, what have we done to work against this earth-shattering trend?

When we know the facts, we are better able to prevent this epidemic from spreading any further. Celebrate African American History Month by advocating for someone you love today!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Celebrate Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is this February 14th! We love shamelessly celebrating love because we know that enjoying the company of a loved one is a luxury many take for granted.

That’s why we’re using this Valentine’s Day to show our gratitude (and love!) to those living with Alzheimer's disease and their caregivers. What better way to celebrate than to say “thank you”? Thank you for the good moments, thank you for the irreplaceable memories, thank you for touching my life in so many ways, thank you for reminding me that love and friendship are unconditional.

You can show your gratitude through something as simple as a heartfelt hug or maybe by participating in an event to #EndALZ! How will you say ‘thank you’ this year? Share a memory of someone you love on our Facebook page!

Monday, February 2, 2015

3 Tips To Help This February

Those living with Alzheimer's do not have to stop living their lives as a result of this disease. Their once favorite activities can still bring just as much joy! With a little bit more conscientiousness in choosing how to keep your loved one engaged, you can enhance their quality of life while reducing the risk of agitation or wandering.

Here are 3 easy tips to keep in mind:

1. Choose wisely: In the early stages of Alzheimer’s, many patients tend to withdraw from the activities they once enjoyed. Choose activities that suit your loved one’s skills and abilities. Notice those that make him or her confused, anxious, joyful, or calmed.

2. Adjust: Depending upon which stage of Alzheimer's you loved one is in, you may need to adjust your chosen activities. For instance, more repetitive tasks tend to be more soothing for those in later stages. If you notice your loved one’s attention drifting, it might be time to end or modify the activity.

3. Encourage self-expression: Often times, those with Alzheimer’s can feel frustrated as a result of not being able to express themselves. Help to open up the lines of communication by allowing him or her to paint, draw, listen to music, or engage in conversation
Above all, find joy in everything you do! Living with Alzheimer’s, whether you are a patient or a caregiver, is a challenge. Learning how to enjoy even the simplest of pleasures is something we all should take advantage of.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

3 Great Resolutions for Caregivers

Alzheimer’s Disease is incredibly difficult for those battling this disease, but it’s all too easy to forget about the heroic amounts of stress and anxiety that accompany the caregivers as well. So, caregivers out there, this blog post is for you!

We invite you to join us, and thousands of others, in resolving to make 2015 the year to take a stand against Alzheimer’s disease. What do you say? Are you up for making the most of this life and leaving a legacy generations after you will remember?

This is the year we say “Enough!” Ready? Let’s go!
1. I resolve to ... sign the pledge to support the fight to end Alzheimer's. By signing this pledge, you are making a statement to Congress. You are saying, we won’t stand for this and neither should you. This is the important first step in making a lasting difference for yourself, for your loved one, and for others.

2. I resolve to ... find an outlet for myself. As Eleanor Brownn, Speaker and Healthy Lifestyle Consultant, said, “You cannot serve from an empty vessel.” It is far from selfish to take some time for yourself. Whether that means making lunch plans with a friend once a week, finding a support group, or picking up an old favorite hobby, it’s important to remember that life is meant to be lived and full of love.

3. I resolve to ... find one Alzheimer’s Association sponsored event and attend. When you attend an event, you become a champion for all of those living with Alzheimer’s disease as well as people like you, their caregivers. There are so many ways to move the cause forward. Choose one and dig in!

Are you inspired yet? This is OUR year. It may have started with Alzheimer's, but it ends with us!

Monday, January 5, 2015

3 Tips this January

Now that the holidays are over, life may begin to feel a little calmer. That’s not to say, however, that it will remain that way. Just as Alzheimer’s Disease continues to change as it progresses, so does one’s role as caregiver. Even if you’re not the primary caregiver for your loved one battling this disease, your relationship with Alzheimer’s is bound to continue shifting as well.

Here are three tips to help prepare you for whatever stage you’re experiencing right now or transitioning into:
1. Early-Stage Caregiving: In the early stages of Alzheimer’s Disease, you are more likely to fall into the role of “care partner” rather than that of “caregiver”. Remember that your loved one will primarily need love, support, and friendship at this point. Tap into the person's strengths and encourage him or her to continue living as independently as possible.

2. Middle-Stage Caregiving: As a caregiver to someone in the middle stages of Alzheimer’s Disease, you will need to educate yourself on what to expect in the coming months. Perhaps most importantly, develop some strategies to help you to cope in the particularly trying moments. For instance, you might consider joining a support group.

3. Late-Stage Caregiving: It is important to realize that, as the disease advances, intensive, around-the-clock care is usually required. Focus on preserving your loved one’s quality of life. This might mean playing his or her favorite music, looking at old photos, or preparing his or her favorite foods.

Although a person in the late stage of Alzheimer's typically loses the ability to talk and express needs, research tells us that some core of the person's self may remain. Remember that, as a caregiver, you are not alone. There is a strong community of people just like you ready to reach out and help!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Avoid Stress and Overstimulation Over the Holidays

The holidays are a time to be joyful! For many, they mean seeing family and friends that have traveled near and far to spend this special time together. There’s always something delicious cooking in the kitchen, large groups of people gather around the fire to reminisce about fond memories, and the laughter often doesn’t die down until late into the night.

But, for those living with Alzheimer’s, the holidays can mean increased feelings of agitation, a great deal of unease – and even prompt wandering. Here are a few ways you can quell the feelings of stress in your loved one this year:

1. Stay Well Rested: "Sundowning" is a state of increased agitation occurring late in the day through the evening hours. Research now indicates that being overly tired may have more to do with “sundowning” than previously thought. If a nap is out of the question for your loved one, try to encourage some quiet time away from the TV and other sources of stimulation.

2. Plan Wisely: Those with Alzheimer’s are generally better able to tolerate outings and events earlier in the day. Manage expectations with your family and friends so that they know when to expect you and what to expect. Try coordinating a quiet breakfast or brunch in the morning rather than a busy dinner in the evening.

3. Calm in the Face of the Storm: If an episode begins to come on, try guiding your loved one away from that particular source of stimulation. A quiet space where they can feel comfortable may be all they need when the world around them seems so loud.

Alzheimer’s Disease is unpredictable, but if you can prepare for unexpected episodes and look for the sources of stimulation that might trigger one, we can focus on what the holidays were meant to be about. Enjoying and relishing the company of those we love.