Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Alzheimer's hits home

My mother-in-law was recently diagnosed with Alzheimer's. We all saw it coming, but the reality of the disease is now starting to rear it's ugly head. My mother-in-law deals with a good deal of forgetfulness and confusion which has been quite embarrassing and frustrating for her. Additionally, her days of driving seem to be over since she has started confusing the accelerator and the brake. This means her children (and their spouses) now need to chip in a bit more to help her and my father-in-law out.

For me, it means paying her a visit once or twice a week while my father-in-law is out at the flying field. He flies model airplanes that he has built himself. We all know he enjoys his time there and none of us want to deprive him of something he is so fond of doing.

I'm sure that we are all in for some difficult times ahead. It's time for me to seek out some literature and perhaps other resources about Alzheimer's to become a little better informed about the disease and the task of caregiving for the individual stricken with it. So far, I've been given one book recommendation: The 36-Hour Day.

Any other recommendations or words of wisdom from readers out there?


  1. Wow Brenda! I am so sorry to hear about this hitting your family!! Although, I do care for my mom, she is physically broken and mentally scarred but, nothing like what is coming your way. There is a site called Elder Care that may help you find some additional services for the family. Also, Take Your Qxygen First is specifically about caring for people with memory loss. Those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head. If I think of anything more, I will send them your way.

  2. Oh wow, what an event to deal with, I know that my grandmother (maternal) was diagnosed with early onset of Alzheimers and dementia. I know they have some medication that helps, but lots of notes is what my mother and grandmother do to help her recall. Post it notes seem to help her follow directions when she becomes confused. Prayers for you during this time.