ERIC Number: ED364710
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1988-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Helping Memory-Impaired Elders: A Guide for Caregivers. A Pacific Northwest Extension Publication. PNW 314.
Schmall, Vicki L.; Cleland, Marilyn
This cooperative extension bulletin is designed to help family and professional caregivers understand dementia in later life and learn to cope more effectively with the changes resulting from a progressive dementing illness. The first three sections describe the differences between senility and dementia, causes of dementia, and adjustments that families of dementia patients must make. The next two sections present a series of self-care guidelines for caregivers and general guidelines. Included among the guidelines discussed are the following: learn about the disease, ask for and accept help, maintain meaningful relationships, take breaks from caregiving, understand and accept feelings as normal human responses, make realistic commitments, hope for the best while planning for the worst, join a support group, keep expectations realistic, be consistent, limit choices, use repetition, use memory aids, simplify tasks, encourage recognition rather than recall, make the environment safe, use reminiscence, reassure and praise, and maintain a sense of humor. A section on approaches to special problems examines these topics: driving, managing money, wandering, Sundowner's syndrome, catastrophic reactions, hallucinations and delusions, bathing and grooming, meals, incontinence, hiding and losing things, and communication. A summary and list of resources conclude the booklet. (MN)
Publication Type: Guides - General
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Oregon State Univ., Corvallis. Cooperative Extension Service.; Washington State Univ., Pullman. Cooperative Extension Service.; Idaho Univ., Moscow. Cooperative Extension Service.