Posts Tagged ‘Nursing Homes’

Understand Dementia & Associated Behaviors

Lori La Bey talks with Karen Severson a Geriatric Psychiatrist with over 20 years experience working in hospitals and nursing homes. Karen will share what she has learned from working in those settings and how to improve the end of life care for those dealing with all forms of neuro-cognitive illnesses. Karen will also talk to us about her book, “Look I Shrunk Grandma – A Psychiatrist guide to Nursing Homes, Dementia and End of Life,” to do just that.

Click below to listen tot he radio show

Contact Karen Severson at:

Phone at:  Clarity Health Solutions 561-781-3333

Email:  karenseversonmd@comcast.net

Fight Alzheimer’s Together

Diana Pierce of “What’s Next with Diana Pierce” talks with Lori La Bey , CEO of Alzheimer’s Speaks helping us reframe our expectations to replace fear with HOPE!

Diana Pierce and Lori La Bey

The Digital Dementia Summit is online and FREE from May 20-26, 2019

Click Above to Register!

Push Dementia Forward – Participate!

Schedule Your Next Event with Lori La Bey https://www.alzheimersspeaks.com/contact-us

Upcoming Public Events with Lori La Bey

Friday, May 3rd – 10:30am – 12:30pm

Educational Program

“As the Cookie Crumbles”

Gable Pines at Vadnais Heights      651-829-3171

1260 East Co. Rd. E, Vadnais Heights, MN 55110

Friday, May 10th – 10:30am – 12:30pm

Film Screening & Talk Back

“A Timeless Love”

Gable Pines at Vadnais Heights      651-829-3171

1260 East Co. Rd. E, Vadnais Heights, MN 55110

Friday, May 17th  – 10:30am – 12:30pm

Educational Program 

“Shifting from Crisis to Comfort”

Gable Pines at Vadnais Heights      651-829-3171

1260 East Co. Rd. E, Vadnais Heights, MN 55110

See what LeadingAge has to say about Lori La Bey

 “Feedback from the conference planning committee and our leadership team was extremely positive. Many attendees commented that she was one of the best speakers they had heard.” 

Pat Sylvia, Director of Education & Member Development LeadingAge WA

For More Testimonial

Video Interviews with Those Living with Dementia

Click Below Download Tips

Find A Memory Café In Your Area

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Quality Aging Survey – Take it Now!

Take The Survey Now and Help Define

What “Quality” Means to You and Your Family!

Open To All In The U.S.

University of Minnesota PhD candidate Heather Davila describes a survey to get input from people age 55+ family members, and professionals who work in the field of aging services about which aspects of “quality” in aging services matter most.

To take the survey go here: www.tinyurl.com/Qagesurvey

Contact: Heather Davila,

Email:  wood0132@umn.edu


Join the Dementia Friendly Cruise –

Before We Set Sail!

We are honored by your response to our offering of the Dementia Friendly Symposium and Cruise and we are encouraging people to book their cabins before we are sold out!

For more details on the symposium and cruise go to https://alzheimersspeaks.com/cruise-with-us

Click here for the Symposium Program

Kathy Shoaf the travel agent handling the symposium and cruise can be reached at: 219-608-2002 or email her at Kathy.Shoaf@CruisePlanners.com


Click Below to Download the Tips


Using Lavender to Treat Dementia

Find a Memory Cafe & Get Resources

Read More to Get Resources

Push Research Forward- Join the A-List

An Important message from our friend Meryl Comer:

Only twice in my twenty plus years as an Alzheimer’s caregiver has a doctor ever asked whether I was doing okay. Yet my husband would have never made the clinic appointment on time if I had not gotten up extra early to bathe, dress, feed, manage his resistance and drive him there. Now here’s a chance to be heard!

Researchers from the Mayo Clinic want to learn what matters most to you when you go to the doctor with your loved one. They need volunteers for an online focus group who are current or former caregivers for a loved one with dementia.

Click here to learn more about this important Mayo Clinic caregiver study asking what matters to you when you go to the doctor with a loved one.

Study participants will be asked to join an online focus group and answer several questions over a week and a half posted by the moderator. Participants can choose to remain anonymous. Their goal is to help healthcare providers better support and communicate with caregivers by learning:

  • How health care providers can best help caregivers provide optimal care to loved ones while maintaining their own health.
  • How involved caregivers want to be their loved ones’ healthcare.
  • What the ideal “care team” looks like.

Please click here for more information about this important Mayo Clinic caregiver study.

Your opinions are critical to improving the experience for all caregivers when they accompany loved ones to doctor’s appointments. Let’s not miss this opportunity to make doctors tune into what matters to us.

Meryl Comer, A-List Team Member & 20-year Alzheimer’s care partner




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Why America Should Embrace Aging

Why America Should Embrace Aging  

Most of us don’t want to grow old. We’d rather put it off. In a recent article by the Associated Press-NORC Center, it said that Americans 40 and older would rather not think about getting older at all.

We enjoy our lives and celebrate our birthdays with blinders on. Who cares if another candle adds to the growing bright flame atop the cake? Each year that we move passed 45 and draw closer to 50, we cringe inside. Birthdays become a day to ignore and to hurry past.

If there’s one thing I learned from my parents, old age will catch up with you no matter how much anti-wrinkle cream one uses. “It’ll be here before you know it, so you better enjoy life.” The wisdom comes from my smart mother.

Since most of us know getting older will come one day, why do we pretend it won’t? Is it our admiration for youthfulness? Or do we dread the inevitable that old age leads to death and dying?

Whatever your feeling about the topic right now, one day each of us will be forced to face it like a man or in my case, like a woman. But for how long do you give yourself the pleasure of disregarding the topic altogether? Most wait until we’re broke and need help.

Two other studies come to mind when thinking about the aging challenges. One is the Long-Term Care Over an Uncertain Future, and the other is America Talks: Protecting Our Families’ Financial Futures.

The first one found that roughly 7 out of 10 people turning age 65 will need long-term care during their lifetimes (3 years.) While the other found, people underestimate their future need. Not just a little either. A whopping 63% of Americans say they will NOT need long-term care at all. Do they believe they’ll never get old? Maybe they should take a look at their grandparents.

Why do I care whether people accept growing older or not? I don’t really. Some of my close friends would rather get shot than learn to accept it. It’s a common dilemma many faces. But when snubbing the truth turns into blind ignorance, especially when planning for future needs, I do care, a lot. Because individuals will find a hard life waiting for them if they don’t plan. I see it all too often. They land in Medicaid nursing homes. And it’s tragic.

Carol_M_graphic_for_articleRecently, I helped steer an important report on the topic of aging. We called it America Has a Major Misconception on Aging. We interviewed 44 thought leaders in senior care. The four questions we asked:

Why is there a drastic difference in people’s perception vs reality of future aging care?

What are the consequences for not being prepared?

How would you close the discrepancy gap?

What advice do you have for consumers about their future care needs?

The replies and suggestions are golden and consumers would benefit by paying close attention and following their advice.

“People equate aging and long term care with death and defeat.”

“Care has been driven by crisis management versus proactive and preventative care.”

“If you are prepared, you can choose the care you receive. If you are unprepared, care is chosen for you.”

“The entire family can be wiped out financially, emotionally, and otherwise. That’s a high price to pay for keeping your head in the sand.”

“Most people don’t have enough money to pay for long-term care out-of-pocket, but have too much money to qualify for Medicaid.”

“Most people falsely believe Medicare will cover the costs of long term care services they will need.”

“Long term care needs to get more mainstream media attention, and not just the risks, but the consequences of aging.”

“Have consistent talks with your family about your long term care plan and maintain the ongoing dialogue.”

“Include long term care as part of your retirement planning. Begin saving and preparing for those needs.”

Getting the general public to face their future need for care is the biggest struggle most elder care professionals run up against. And the struggle intensifies each year since the number of people turning 65 broadens. I could bury my head and ignore this grave issue. But since most people do that, I’m choosing the opposite. I asked 44 senior care authorities to help me find solutions.

They complied. Read what they predict and what they suggest to deliver us from the anguish of aging.

Carol Marak is a contributor for the senior living and healthcare market. She advocates older adults and family caregivers. Read her work at AssistedLivingFacilities.org and SeniorCare.com. Find her on LinkedIn and contact her at Carol@SeniorCare.com.

You could make a difference for your loved one with Alzheimer’s.

Visit the website below today.

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Remember the Person, Not the Disease

By: Michelle Remold

As I sat down to write this blog, I wasn’t sure how I wanted to start it. I found myself reading through quotes about Alzheimer’s and dementia hoping one would jump out at me. None of them really seemed to specifically fit this topic, so I kept reading when a theme seemed to jump out at me. The theme was when it comes you a loved one you can’t pretend it’s not there. This theme seemed to fit this topic well as I have been thinking about how sometimes it seems easier to ignore the disease or pretend it’s not there.

When my grandpa was first diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, family and friends seemed to visit frequently. However, as the disease progressed, those visits became fewer and further between until they weren’t visiting anymore. The common reasoning that was given for why they stopped visiting was that they didn’t want to see him like that and wanted to remember him the way he was. Growing up I heard that countless times but I hadn’t really thought about it until recently. I can respect the fact that they want to keep the good memories alive, but families deal with the decline of Alzheimer’s and dementia daily.

I write about my grandpa often and have attributed my career path to him. When he first passed away I would say that I had “my grandpa” for the first seven years of my life and I had “my grandpa with Alzheimer’s” for the last eleven years. I have so many memories of him before he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Going on long walks, taking us to the park, sneaking me candy and gum when my grandma told him not to, his awesome back rubs, and the holiday parties they would have for us after school. As time wore on though I started realizing all the great memories I have from after his diagnosis. His laugh, his smile when he heard my voice, holding hands, coloring, reading to him, and dancing with him are all memories I have from when he was in the nursing home. Each memory is equally happy for me.

I have always known my grandpa was a key factor in why I chose Gerontology and why Alzheimer’s disease fascinates, but it never really hit me until recently how much of a role he played. As I look back on the memories I have of him, it has become clear to me that what I remember most are the characteristics of my grandpa, not his Alzheimer’s. It has also become much more evident to me now that it is important to remember the person, not the disease.

008Michelle graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with her Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology: Social Sciences and a minor in Family Studies. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Aging Studies and Nursing Home Administration from Minnesota State University Mankato.

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It’s the Thought That Counts

By: Michelle Remold

As the Thanksgiving weekend comes to a close, I can’t help but anticipate the rest of the holiday season.  This time of year is definitely my favorite and I try to volunteer as much as possible. This time of year also makes me think about ways to include loved ones who are in skilled nursing facilities, especially those with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

When I think back to when my grandpa was in the nursing home, some of my best memories come from the holiday season. We couldn’t put a tree up in his room, but we always had a fake Poinsettia for his night stand and brought a real one for the nursing station.  We also would bring a few sheets of window clings for his window. We would bring holiday themed coloring books, color pictures with him, and hang them on his walls for decorations.

When we got around to baking cookies, a tray would find its way up to him. My grandpa had a sweet tooth, so cookies were his favorite part. We would also bring cookies up for the nurses and would pass out cookies and other desserts to the residents who were able to eat them. We would wrap presents and take them up to the nursing home for him to open. During one of my grandpa’s last holidays, my cousin played the piano and we all sang carols for him. My brother and I even would dance with him to the music playing in the hallways.

As the holidays roll around, people tend to become very busy, but it’s important to remember that it is the small things that make holidays great. It could be stopping up to put window clings or bringing up coffee and cookies and just enjoying each other’s company or a short note. I think the most important thing is to make them feel special and remembered.

They may not remember in a few moments what gifts they had just received, what pictures were taken, or what songs were sung, but does it really matter?  For a few moments they had a smile on their face and to me that’s all that matters. After all it’s the thought that counts.

008Michelle graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with her Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology: Social Sciences and a minor in Family Studies. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Aging Studies and Nursing Home Administration from Minnesota State University Mankato.

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Connecting Generations

By: Michelle Remold

Something I always notice when visiting a nursing home is the number of young people visiting. While I know nursing home aren’t exactly the first place young people think of spending time, I know from experience that they can be one of the most rewarding places to spend time.

Connecting generations is important. It is how stories are passed down and memories are shared. Without such connections, many memories and stories are forgotten. Schools have “foster grandparent” programs where older adults go into the schools and read with kids or help them with homework. I think something like this would be great in nursing homes. I remember thinking in high school how fun it would be to have a “foster grandparent,” I would visit weekly in the nursing home.  Growing up, I remember how excited the residents on my grandpa’s Alzheimer’s unit would be when we came up to visit. I don’t think I ever saw any other kids there visiting. I always found it a little sad and would try to stop and talk with as many residents as I could. There are school groups that need to find ways to volunteer and need to log their hours. How great would it be if one day a month they visited nursing homes and those with Alzheimer’s and dementia? They could meet in a common area, play BINGO, cards, or just talk. I have many memories from visiting nursing homes.

Another thing I think more nursing homes should take part in is a pen pal program. While interning at the Faribault Area Senior Center, I was able to visit a facility on the day the seniors met their first grade pen pals. Seeing the excitement on everyone’s faces was great. They exchanged their last letter, gifts, and some even exchanged addresses so they could continue writing to each other. When I went to college, I made it a point to write to my great-grandma. She lived in an assisted living at the time and couldn’t see very well. She would have an aid read her the letters and they would write me back for her. I later found out, after she passed away, that she would look forward to the letters and that they made her feel included; my great-uncle kept thanking me for writing to her. For me, writing letters is easy. I just write about what is going on, though part of it is just knowing that someone was thinking about you.  If young people don’t feel comfortable going to nursing homes, I think that this is a great alternative to connecting generations.

It may be a short visit or a quick note, but these things are important when it comes to connecting generations. When I look back, I cherish the notes I received from my grandparents, the stories shared by them and those I have visited, and seeing the smiles on their faces when I would stop to talk with them. My brother and I went back to visit the gentleman who was my grandma’s neighbor while she was in rehab, he loved it. My brother would bring him treats, helped him set up his Wii and would play board games with him and the other residents. These little things meant a lot to them and my brother still talks about his visits at the nursing home with this gentleman.  As I end this blog and think about why it is important to connect generations, I will end with a quote. “Life isn’t a matter of milestones, but a matter of moments.” –Author Unknown

008Michelle graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with her Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology: Social Sciences and a minor in Family Studies. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Aging Studies and Nursing Home Administration from Minnesota State University Mankato.

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“Love Them While They’re With You”

by: Libby L. Alle


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