“Family members and other people who care for dementia sufferers often neglect their own needs,” says Judy Nordschow, director of Sales and Marketing, Fox Point, a senior lifestyle community. “Caring for loved ones with dementia can be overwhelming. We offer a monthly support group for caregivers so they can get re-energized by sharing and talking through their challenges to help each other.”
Participation in the support group is free, and is open to all dementia caregivers, whether or not their loved ones reside at Fox Point. No registration is needed. The group meets on the last Tuesday of each month from 4:30-5:30 p.m. at the address listed below.
Norsdschow adds, “Even though their loved one is deceased and hadn’t stayed at Fox Point, one person still joins our support group each month, The burden was so hard, they appreciate the support.”
Dementia is a broad term referring to the loss of cognitive functioning, such as thinking, remembering, and reasoning. The National Institute on Aging says that dementia interferes with a person’s daily life and activities. Signs may include difficulties with memory, problem-solving, self-management, language skills, and focus. There are many types of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.
Whether you are the caregiver, or supporting someone who is helping a needy person, Helpguide.org offers these suggestions: Learn as much as possible about your family member’s illness, and what’s medically required. Seek out support from other caregivers, who understand first-hand what you’re experiencing. Don’t do everything for your loved one, but encourage him or her to be as independent as possible. Set clear limits of your time and energy, and communicate them to other people involved with your loved one’s care.
“Caregiving can trigger difficult emotions, including anger, fear, resentment, guilt, helplessness, and grief. It’s important to acknowledge and accept your feelings; they mean you’re human,” Helpguide affirms.