Recognizing the Importance of Advocating for those with Alzheimer’s and Dementia

From the Congressional Record of September 21, 2016: HON. MICHAEL G. FITZPATRICK of Pennsylvania in the House of Representatives Wednesday, September 21, 2016 Mr. FITZPATRICK. Mr. Speaker, I include in the Record the following letter by Michael Ellenbogen. I am so thankful to be still here. Many of my friends who were living with dementia have died and others are no longer capable of speaking. I am one of the lucky ones. My Alzheimer’s is progressing very slowly. While that is good news it is also bad news. I will be forced to endure the worst part of this disease even…

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Finding a balance between risk and an enjoyable life for someone with dementia

By Unforgettable.org The DAA thanks our Partner Unforgettable.org for allowing us to re-post this blog. You want to keep your loved one with dementia safe, but you also want them to enjoy life as much as possible. So how do you get the balance right? Find out what you need to know about Positive Risk Taking Could this be you? You know you can’t wrap them in cotton wool and that the person you’re caring for needs to make the most of each and every day, but: • They’re vulnerable and you need to protect them. • It would be…

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Maureen’s journey: ‘We have a positive attitude – we’ll try anything once!’

The DAA thanks Maureen and Mike and Unforgettable.org for allowing us to re-post their story Maureen Pike’s husband Mike was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and Posterior Cortical Atrophy (PCA) at the age of 59. Here Maureen explains how they’re both continuing to enjoy life. How was Mike diagnosed? It was quite a long process. Mike had always looked after himself and led a healthy, active lifestyle. The only time he’d ever been ill was as a teenager when he had an eye condition (his eye turned in) and needed an operation to correct it. Then in his early fifties he started…

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Living Well with Dementia: The Pygmalion Effect

By Karen Love, DAA Executive Director In 1968, Robert Rosenthal and Lenore Jacobson published groundbreaking research that showed teacher expectations of students became self-fulfilling prophecies. At the beginning of a school year first and second grade students’ IQs were tested. The researchers randomly selected a group of students regardless of their actual test results and led the teachers to believe that this group was capable of great academic achievement. At the end of the year the students were retested. The group labeled high academic achievers did, in fact, show higher achievement than the other students. Robert Rosenthal summarized this research finding…

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See the person, not the disease, with Alzheimer’s caregiving

By Angela Lunde Cognitive Health and Wellness Director Mayo Clinic Department of Neurology Originally published July 10, 2014 The DAA appreciates Angela allowing us to share her blog because her insights are “timeless” and “so true”: Last time, we spoke about wandering, a label we often attach to a person living with Alzheimer’s. It’s natural to attach a label to something we don’t completely understand or like. Think of other labels we use and apply in the context of dementia.  We label a person as a way to explain their so called “behaviors” with words like: resistive, hoarder, screamer, pacer, or…

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You Can Help Someone Live Fully with Dementia

by Jackie Pinkowitz, DAA Co-Leader Every once in a while something special comes along that has the power to stop us in our tracks. Our “Person-Centered Matters” video (see it here) about people living with dementia and those who care about them has such power, beautifully highlighting the positive aspects about helping people live fully with dementia. Many people around our country are doing wonderful things to help others live fully with dementia; they just don’t get front-page media attention for enhancing joy and meaningful engagement in their communities!! Today, the DAA would like to share two video clips that may provide new insights…

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PERSPECTIVES ON ADVOCACY:  Strength in Numbers

By Cynthia Janus, M.D., author of THE ALZHEIMER’S CATASTROPHE: The Long Uphill Battle Against Alzheimer’s Disease and Why We Can’t Afford to Lose People who are diagnosed with dementia, and those who love them, embark on a challenging journey as the lives they had previously imagined are changed forever.   I know this because I was on this journey for at least thirteen years with my husband, who had dementia, ultimately diagnosed as Alzheimer’s type. In the case of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, there are more questions than answers as to its exact nature and cause (or…

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