Senior edition: self-care for caregivers


By Holly Steele - For The Register-Herald



EATON —With November being National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, and National Family Caregivers month, it’s a great time to remember how important family caregivers are to our communities. There are currently more than 15 million Americans providing unpaid care for people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. In 2016, these caregivers provided an estimated 18.2 billion hours of care to loved ones living with dementia.

Caregiving is demanding, and it’s normal to need a break. Seeking help does not make you a failure. Remember that respite services benefit the person with dementia as well as the caregiver. Respite care can help caregivers by providing a new environment or time to relax. It’s a good way for the caregiver to take care of themselves. Respite care can be provided at home, by a friend, other family member, volunteer or paid service, or in a care setting, such as adult day care or residential facility. Respite care can provide:

•A chance to spend time with other friends and family, or to relax.

•Time to take care of errands such as shopping, exercising, getting a haircut or going to the doctor.

•Comfort and peace of mind knowing that the person with dementia is spending time with another caring individual.

•Respite care services can give the person with dementia an opportunity to:

•Interact with others having similar experiences.

•Spend time in a safe, supportive environment.

•Participate in activities designed to match personal abilities and needs.

The Preble County Council on Aging offers In-Home care services which supports caregivers with the following options: Companionship services to individuals, homemaking services such as light housekeeping, laundry, grocery shopping, errands, and light meal preparation. As well as non-medical respite for caregivers who are taking care of their loved one(s). PCCOA often works in partnership with Job and Family Services in providing respite care for caregivers in the county.

The Alzheimer’s Association, is also available to support caregivers and people with dementia all day, every day of the year. Not only does the Alzheimer’s Association provide education and support groups for caregivers but their social workers are able to meet with caregivers and family members to provide information and ongoing support. Caregivers can find 24/7 support by calling our helpline at 800-272-3900 or online at alz.org/Dayton.

To stay up to date on all of our activities, trips and senior news sign up to receive our bi-monthly newsletter the “Senior Scene.” Membership at the Senior Center is $10 a year. In addition to other benefits, members automatically receive our bi-monthly “Senior Scene” newsletter which features all our latest news and activities, additional benefits are discounts on trips and select activities. Like our Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/preblecountycouncilonaging/ or give us a call at 937-456-4947. Visit our website at www.PrebleSeniorCenter.org.

By Holly Steele

For The Register-Herald