For many families, taking care of a relative with Alzheimer's disease at home is the only viable option. Roughly 60 percent to 70 percent of those with the incurable disease continue to live in their homes or with family members.
But many of these caregivers have never been trained to provide care or to deal with the anger, aggression, wandering and refusal to eat often associated with the disease.
Such training will be available Tuesday at Home Instead Senior Care offices in Modesto. Staff will explain what they consider to be a groundbreaking new concept called the Alzheimer's Disease or Other Dementias CARE program. The program is free to all, regardless of whether they use the company's services.
Because so many Alzheimer's patients suffer from short-term memory loss but maintain long-term memory, the program focuses on tapping into the latter to manage their behaviors. The program includes four classes.
"CARE is a wonderful hands-on approach that helps caregivers deal with the behavioral changes that too often accompany these disorders one of the biggest stressors for caregivers," Dr. Jane Potter of the University of Nebraska Medical Center said in a news release. She heads the hospital's geriatrics and gerontology division. "There was previously no good program available using adult education techniques to provide hands-on practice in learning how to best help people who have dementia. This is huge."
The classes include an overview of Alzheimer's or other dementia, using long-term memory to the patient's benefit, techniques to manage behaviors, and activities to encourage engagement.
The event begins at 6 at Home Instead Senior Care, 2937 Veneman Ave., Suite C260, Modesto. Call (209) 543-1277 for more information or to reserve space.