Communications Skills

Wedding Bands & Engagement Rings

Wedding bands and engagement rings….. family necklaces….heirloom broaches….   Alzheimer’s and dementia (AD/D) loved ones may become paranoid or suspicious about family or staff “stealing” their belongings. This may happen because they forget where they have put their valuable items.  On the other hand, they may really be upset because you have taken the car…

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Apathy vs. Depression

What’s the difference?   “Apathy and depression are two conditions that have been studied extensively in psychology. Apathy refers to the lack of interest that can be seen in a person. Depression, on the other hand, is a psychological condition where a person loses interest in daily activities and feels hopeless.” (differencebetween.com) So how does…

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Positive Tips for Communicating (1)

I recently posted this chart on my FB page (DCPutnam Consulting  4.22.17) and to date it has had almost 1,500 hits.  That tells me that this information is important to caregivers.  So I want to go into more detail as to what this all means. This is a wonderful guide for family members, professional caregivers…

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A Healthy Environment

Yesterday afternoon (1.12.17) I attended a 90 minute webinar sponsored by AFTD – The Association of Frontotemporal Degeneration.  As a facilitator for a FTD support group,  and soon to be the New England Regional Coordinator (volunteer) for AFTD, its important that I continue to learn and expand my knowledge base. The educational program was geared…

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Verbal Abuse

There are many family caregivers (and professional caregivers) who don’t understand what is physically happening to the brain and therefore don’t know how to communicate with their loved one. There are certain things you do and do not say to someone with Alzheimer’s or some form of dementia. Consequently this lack of understanding can lead…

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Importance of Support Groups

Many people question if they should attend a support group.  There are many valid reasons why caregivers find support groups to be helpful in managing their day to day life with someone with Alzheimer’s disease or one of the related dementias. So let’s take a look at the advantages of participating in a monthly Alzheimer’s…

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“Prison Bars Don’t Block Dementia”

I had a unique experience not too long ago. An experience that I never could have imagined being part of a few years ago. An experience that opened my eyes to new learnings and appreciation for something that was way, way beyond my imagination. When we think of “aging in place” we think of ourselves…

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Mini-Mental State Exam

  **What is the cognitive test that is done with individuals that may have Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia? **If your loved one has seen (his) primary care physician, or perhaps a gerontologist or neurologist, he has most likely done a mini-mental test. There are various forms of this test, all with the…

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Frontoemporal Degeneration (FTD)

Frontotemporal Degeneration (dementia), FTD, is not a term you hear very often, but it’s important to know what it is. It presents very differently from Alzheimer’s disease. I recently became a volunteer for the AFTD (Association of Frontotemporal Degeneration) because of an awesome, but heart-breaking presentation I heard at a professional networking meeting recently. The…

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LIVING IN THE MOMENT

A moment in time is brief and very specific. It may only be a matter of seconds or minutes. Perhaps it’s a moment when you remember a childhood secret or the moment when the love of your life slipped your wedding band onto your finger. A moment when you see a beautiful fall tree that…

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