Problem-solving squad for long-term care formed.
Dr. Duncan Robertson's Presentation at 3rd EODA
By MARK WEBER
November 12, 2015 ·
Careful planning for the future in terms of providing care for those with dementia is critical with an aging population, speakers noted at a recent conference in Red Deer. Early Onset Dementia Alberta (EODA) in partnership with the Alzheimer Society recently hosted the third annual Building Dementia Awareness Conference. According to the Alzheimer Society of Canada, dementia beginning before the age of 65 is known as early onset dementia Many people assume that Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias only affect older people. However, about one person in every 1,000 under the age of 65 develops dementia. Many can be in their 40s or 50s, and there are a number of challenges they may face such as having dependent children/parents living at home, having significant financial commitments (mortgage, children university fees, etc.) and finding it difficult to get information, support and services adapted to younger people with dementia. According to the Society,
Global's Latest Dementia News
Global news anchor Dawna Friesen is an advocate for dementia. Global news online has a Dementia news page featuring the many dozens of stories that they have posted: http://globalnews.ca/tag/dementia/
Home Care, Community Care, Long Term Care
On October 31, 2015 the EODA (Early Onset Dementia Alberta) association held an open forum in Red Deer, Alberta to discuss their talking points with the broader community. Over one hundred community members from emergency services, non-profit service providers, family members and clinicians contributed to these findings.
What is working?
- Health Link 811 (with additional resource specific to dementia care) is an example of a supportive community program available via telephone
- Dementia Friends is a grassroots effort to help grow awareness and support in community
- ASANT Café is an online gathering place for people living with dementia and their care partners
- Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories
- Family Community Support Services, although not consistently available throughout the province does offer day programs and learning opportunities
- Alberta Dementia Strategy and Action Plan is coming to completion and will soon be presented to the ministry of health
Humanity and Dementia
Humanity and Dementia
Presented at the Early Onset Dementia Alberta Conference, Red Deer Alberta
By Donna Durand SOCAN 2005 www.donnadurand.com
October 30, 2015
When we speak of person centered philosophy and care, we are speaking of our humanity. Humans are multi-faceted and each domain, from the physical to social, makes up the whole person. The reference to person centered was first coined by humanistic psychologist Carl Rogers .
Knowing this, how do we enjoy life, on all domains, in this moment?
We do this by supporting individuals and each other. We value the inclusiveness of all community members as with the age friendly communities’ initiative (World Health Organization).
We look for ability not disability. Public policy and every day behaviors will reflect and support this.
My talk is not about specific caregiving techniques; rather it is on caring about people living with dementia.
Ten years ago I was working from a grant that specified start up and facilitation of early stage and early onset support groups. While interacting with people who were both young and old, in the early stage of a progressive dementia such as Alzheimer’s disease, I was astounded by the depth of personality and ability the participants demonstrated. I was also keenly aware of the loss of words and once highly developed skill sets related to cognitive function. This shock directly led me to take up an abandoned hobby- songwriting and poetry.
I will use the song - Nothing Grows , written at this same time as the startup of these groups, to attempt to bring awareness to some of what might be going on in the world of a person who is living with dementia.
5 Things People with Alzheimer's Want to Tell You
- I've been diagnosed, not defined, see the real me: "I am not a diagnostic or a statistic. I still have feelings, thoughts, dreams, hopes and plans. There are many things I can still do. I am not sitting in a wheelchair in a nursing home staring out the window—not yet. I am a vibrant, loving person. Always remember, I have Alzheimer's, it does not have me."
- I can't do this alone, help me: "I need you to help me find ways to succeed at helping others and in doing something significant with my life. I am very capable of putting thoughts together and expressing them. I sometimes need help understanding things, but that does not mean that I don't understand. I sometimes need help expressing things, but that doesn't mean I have no thoughts, and nothing to say. Help me when I need it, and let me do all I can, while I still can."
- I am worthy, respect me: "I need to feel that what I say and do matters. I have much yet to offer the world. In many ways, I have more to offer than someone who has not read the final chapter of their life yet. I have lived life, my life, and I am worthy of respect, just as I was before."
- I am scared, comfort me: "I am scared of the unknown. I don't know if I have six months to communicate, or six years. I worry about going to bed at night and whether I'm going to be as bad tomorrow. This disease is with you 24/7. It's my brain and I can't get away from it—it is a scary thing."
- I crave compassion, love me: "I need to feel loved and needed, and that my contribution to life matters and helps someone else. I need to feel loved and not rejected because of my diagnosis. I need people to meet and accept me where I am at, right now. It is important to understand that I don't understand. I don't have any idea why I forget some things and remember others. It's not intentional—I just don't have the ability to realize what I am doing wrong."
Alzheimer's Cafe in Lethbridge
The Alzheimer's Cafe is held monthly in Lethbridge at the Pemmican Lodge. This is a casual get together, a chance to meet others and have a visit. NO stress, no commitment, nice people!
102 - 5th Avenue South
4th Monday of the month. The next get together is Monday 30 May 2016 (the 4th Monday is a long weekend).
Next meeting of Southwood
The next meeting of Southwood is
Tuesday 3 May 2016 from 7pm to 8:30pm
at Southwood United Church, 10690 Elbow Drive SW Calgary
This meeting is open to those affected by Early OnSet Dementia/Alzheimer's (meaning a diagnosis before the age of 65). Caregivers meet in an informal and unfacilitated setting to discuss issues. Partners meet separately in a facilitated group.