Tips for including elderly family members in holiday celebrations

For most of us, holidays go hand in hand with our families. I don’t know about you, but my family includes a lot of different ages. We have half pints, tweens, teenagers, boomers, grandparents, and up until recently, great-grandparents! Visiting elders and including them in holiday festivities is a guaranteed way to lift spirits and bring Read more…

Loss and grief are part of caring for someone with Alzheimer’s

  With trepidation, I enter the long-term care facility. Bounding up a flight a stairs, I pause before opening the door to the second floor. The pause is two-fold. I need to search my memory bank for the code to enter the special care unit and secondly, to take a deep breath as I prepare Read more…

Grief is a normal reaction to any loss

  Drawing on local expertise, the following column is written by Ruth Barry, a qualified psychotherapist. Ruth works with palliative and bereaved individuals and families referred to the Comox Valley Hospice Society in addition to her local private practice. Grief is our normal reaction to loss of any kind. Whatever you are feeling is normal Read more…

You can run, but you can’t hide…from grief

I like reading the obituaries. It’s the first section I flip to in our local paper. It’s OK — you can breathe a sigh a relief knowing you aren’t the only one! Reading obituaries reminds me of my own mortality and allows acknowledgement of the death of people I know.  More importantly, it gives me Read more…

Support is available for caregivers dealing with Alzheimer’s and related dementia

Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia can be challenging and, at times, overwhelming. We remind our clients that their feelings of frustration and anger are normal and valid emotional responses to caring for their loved ones. A certain degree of irritation is normal for anyone in a caregiving role Read more…

Avoiding Burnout When Caring for someone with Dementia

Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia can be challenging and, at times, overwhelming. We remind our clients that their feelings of frustration and anger are normal and valid emotional responses to caring for their loved ones. A certain degree of irritation is normal for anyone in a caregiving role Read more…

Resources for those affected by Alzheimer’s disease

I want to thank everyone for their feedback regarding column topics. I received a variety of suggestions including grief, respite and advocacy. Starting in October, the column will integrate readers’ suggestions. Any time you wish to submit a suggestion, please e-mail them to me at info@keystoneeldercare.com . Continuing with the education theme, September’s columns are Read more…

Caregiving can be like going back to school

I’m getting the Back to School Jitters. My little girl begins full day kindergarten next week and a week later, I go back to school for the first time in 10 years. I’m enrolled in a Case Management program through McMaster University. Despite the 35-year age gap, daughter and Mom are experiencing similar emotions. We’re Read more…

Caregivers need vacations too – these tips might help!

  Being a caregiver and taking a vacation don’t always go hand in hand. In fact, it isn’t particularly easy for caregivers to book time off. When talking to our clients about taking a break or using respite, we are usually met with some resistance or legitimate concerns: “Who will look after my Dad overnight?” Read more…

Tips for travel planning with seniors

As I’m desperately trying to meet deadline, my Mom is happily sitting on my couch reading my previous columns on her new iPad. What she doesn’t know is that I’m currently writing about her physical challenges (she is in denial about her own aging, which she would deny if you asked her!) and holiday travelling. Read more…

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“You are amazing! What I tried to do in 2 months, you did in 1 week. You’ve helped us navigate the system, made sense of Mom’s disease, and gave back her independence and control. Thank you for making such a difference in Mom’s life and giving us, her family, complete peace of mind.”

– Mike G., Nanaimo, BC

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