Feeling Stress Free – An Alzheimer’s Caregiver Blog Series. Part Three: Educate Yourself
*Republished with author’s permission: By Teresa Maron
Feeling Stress Free is a stress management blog series for Alzheimer’s caregivers. In this 12-part series we will begin to learn and explore holistic techniques and seek practical solutions to add stress management to your daily routine. I will share stories of caregivers, and their personal tips as well as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia resources. Our third tip is to Educate Yourself.
As the saying goes, forewarned is forearmed. The most stress reducing thing a caregiver can do is to find resources that answers your questions. This edition of Feeling Stress Free explores ways to get organized with education and preparedness.
The most proactive way to reduce anxiety and fear is to educate yourself. Let’s get started!
Top 5 Tips on How To Educate Yourself
1. Understand the warning signs
First of all, if your loved one is exhibiting signs of forgetfulness and seems disoriented don’t assume. There are many other causes and some of them are easy to fix. Many people have put off seeking treatment, and tried to hide the symptoms when it was simple fix such as medications in the wrong dose or combined improperly. Educate yourself to know the 10 warning signs you should be looking for.
2. Latest findings and treatments
There is a global movement towards reducing the risk factors and effects of Alzheimer’s through research, education and lifestyle changes. A group of experts gathered in London, July 2017 to deepen the understanding and share research results.
“We are determined to develop and deliver a more-specific recipe for Alzheimer’s risk reduction,” said Maria Carrillo, Ph.D., chief science officer at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2017 (AAIC 2017)
Read more about the inspirational research HERE.
3. Make Lifestyle changes that work
In Part 1 of Feeling Stress Free we heard from Barbara, a caregiver who made some changes that resulted in huge differences to her health and well-being. Her Top 10 Tips are both practical and easy to implement into your lifestyle.
In Part 2, we discussed preventive changes to lower risk factors. Diet and exercise are key, however, new research shows staying connected in the community is another important component.
More than one-third of global dementia cases may be preventable through lifestyle.
The overall takeaway here is that a healthy holistic lifestyle combining physical, mental and emotional pursuits lowers risk factors significantly.
4. Participate in clinical research
Research is currently being conducted in many areas. Participating in a trial might be something that is right for you. Alzheimer’s Association TrialMatch® is a free, easy-to-use clinical studies matching service that generates customized lists of studies based on user-provided information. You can easily see what studies you may qualify for.
Who Are We Looking For?
Individuals with dementia or those who are at risk of developing it, caregivers and healthy volunteers with no dementia issues are needed today to help advance Alzheimer’s research.
By participating in clinical research, you can help to accelerate progress and provide valuable insight into potential treatments and methods of prevention. Without the participation of people like you, finding a cure is nearly impossible.
5. Stay Connected
Information is available and getting involved is easy. Sharing your concerns and getting advice from people who truly understand what it means to live with your challenges is the best way to stay in control and Feel Stress Free.
AlzConnected is a free online community for:
- People with the disease
- Family Members
- Individuals who have lost someone to Alzheimer’s
Next time, we will discuss some tips for financial preparedness. In the meantime, don’t forget to Educate Yourself.
About the Author
Teresa Maron writes for the AlzTex Blog on the topics of health, happiness and living stress free.
She believes the very best quality of life insurance is the kind that makes every day you live more secure, more risk free and more peaceful. Now more than ever, there are new choices available. Teresa is a licensed insurance agent with Bankers Life and you can contact her today.