How to Travel with Someone who had Dementia [5 tips]

Uncategorized Jul 05, 2022

Hey there Careblazer! Are you thinking about traveling?


Traveling can be fun and energizing for a lot of people and other times it is simply a necessity but I have heard so many Careblazers say that they cannot travel or are fearful of traveling with their LOWD. Planning when traveling can be very important but when it comes to traveling with your LOWD the need to plan becomes even more noticeable.  Planning is important for both you and your loved one: it can help reduce overall stress associated with travel and it can also help reduce the likelihood of creating frustrating situations for your LOWD. Today, I want to share with you my top 5 tips for preparing to travel. 


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here. 


Several years ago I did a video on things to consider when thinking about traveling with your LOWD. Head over to that video for discussion of how to make sure you are being realistic or have your mind right for...

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Do Jelly Drops prevent dehydration in dementia?

Hello Careblazers!

This week over on my YouTube channel, I interviewed the creator of Jelly Drops: a unique and creative way to help prevent dehydration in dementia. While these shouldn't replace actual liquids, your loved one may enjoy eating them and get a bit more water in their system as a result.

If you're interested to know more, please watch the full video here to learn about Jelly Drops and how much water they actually contain.

PLEASE NOTE: I do not advocate for Jelly Drops. I am not an affiliate. I received zero money from Jelly Drops for this video. This is purely an informational video to learn more about Jelly Drops which have recently become available in the U.S.

Keep up the great work Careblazers! 

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When Dementia Behavior Tips Don't Work

In this post, we are going to talk about the first and most important step to actually solve a difficult dementia behavior.


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here.

Before any problem can be solved we first have to identify what exactly the problem is. This is actually the most important step and it sounds simple, but after working with thousands and thousands of careblazers this first step is more often than not done incorrectly and it lowers  the chances of any behavior change from happening. 


So grab a piece of paper, we are going to get really clear on step one.

I want you to write down on your paper or in the comments what is one thing or one behavior you are trying to change or would like to see change in your loved one with dementia? 

Now take a look at what you wrote down. The very first step in solving a problem is to get clear on what that problem is and in order to do that, you can’t have your own judgements and...

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What causes aggression in dementia? [5 reasons]

Uncategorized May 31, 2022

Hey there Careblazer. While all dementia behaviors can be difficult in their own way, today, I want to talk about hostility and combativeness in your LOWD. As we all know frustration can quickly escalate to hostility and aggression. Today I want to talk about some of the reasons your LOWD may become combative and what to consider in these situations. 


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here!


Ok Careblazer, so… what do you do when your LOWD begins to get frustrated? Let’s first pause and think about why they are becoming frustrated to begin with and this may give us our answer as to how to respond.There are many reasons your LOWD may be frustrated, here are 5 possibilities:


  1. There is too much going on in the environment (TV, people in the home, eating, strong smells, animals, loud noises). 

When the environment around you is overwhelming, it is easy for anyone to begin to get frustrated. Take a second to think about...

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5 Things to Avoid in Dementia Care

Uncategorized May 17, 2022

Today, I want to talk about some of the most damaging, costly behaviors we often do without realizing it’s putting a strain on the relationship. 


As a reminder,  anything hurting your relationship with the person who has dementia will make it more difficult for the person to want to accept your help  now and in the future. And the idea of “hurting” in your relationship isn’t from your perspective. I know you would never do anything to intentionally  hurt the person with dementia.

But what is your loved one with dementia thinking? Do they think you are helping or do they think you hruting, or hindering, or just getting in the way of them living their life. If you’re person with dementia seems to be pushing back on yoru care efforts and doesn’t seem to enjoy having you around tune in to see if you are making any of these 5 mistakes. 


Remember, no one ever sat down with you to talk about this with you, so...

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Mild dementia vs Mild cognitive impairment

Uncategorized May 15, 2022

We spend a lot of time talking about dementia but there are a lot of terms and diagnoses related to changes in thinking that can be very confusing. Today, I would like to talk about mild cognitive impairment. What is it? Is it the same as mild dementia? What does this diagnosis mean for you or your loved one? 


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here.


Ok Careblazer lets get started. Let first break down the words in mild cognitive impairment. First we have mild meaning “slight” or “minor”, then cognitive which means “thinking”, and then impairment which means “loss.” If we put that all together it really means slight thinking loss or minor thinking loss. These versions may be a little easier to use when thinking about this diagnosis. 


Another term that you may hear used interchangeably with mild cognitive impairment is mild neurocognitive disorder. 


So how does one come...

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Improve meal times for someone with dementia

Uncategorized May 07, 2022

There are a lot of reasons why mealtime can be stressful when caring for your loved one with dementia. BUT it does not have to be a battle! Today I want to talk about my top 7 tips and tricks you can use to help reduce stress around meal times. At the end I am also going to provide some bonus tips around eating out so read until the end!  


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here.

Also just as a reminder Careblazer, I did a video a few years ago where I interviewed a nutritionist and we talked about how to get your LOWD to eat and drink healthier. In it we discussed several different things including the mediterranean diet and how to identify possible swallowing issues. Make sure to check that video here out for details. 


Ok, let’s get started.

Careblazer, I don’t need to tell you that caring for your LOWD is hard but when it comes to food, there are a few things you can do to make mealtime a little easier. All of the tips I...

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Should you give alcohol to someone with dementia?

Uncategorized Apr 15, 2022

Today, I want to talk about a topic that I have seen many Careblazers struggle with: substance use, particularly alcohol use in their LOWD.

Before I jump into this, I want to clarify that today we are talking about alcohol USE not ABUSE. There is a big difference between someone who occasionally enjoys having a few alcoholic beverages and someone who, even prior to developing dementia, had problematic alcohol consumption. Both of these topics are important and I plan to address alcohol (or other substance abuse) in a future video; however, today we will be focusing on things to consider when your LOWD would like to have an alcoholic beverage.


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here. 


I have heard a wide variety of opinions on individuals with dementia consuming alcohol. I am not here today to tell you what is right for you and your LOWD. My goal today is to give you several things to consider when this situation comes up if this is something...

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How to get someone with dementia to drink water?

Uncategorized Apr 12, 2022

Staying hydrated is incredibly important for anyone, but getting your LOWD to stay hydrated can be a challenge. Why is that?

You and I can tell when we are thirsty, can get ourselves a glass of water or other drink, and can physically drink it. Is the same true for your LOWD? In many cases a person with dementia’s brain may not tell them they are thirsty or, if it does, they may not be able to tell you what they need/want or be able to process how to get what they want. Furthermore, there may be physical challenges that make drinking more difficult.

Today I want to review some tips for getting your LOWD to drink more. If your LOWD has any problems with drinking or swallowing, make sure you consult with their provider or a speech. 


If you would rather watch a video on this topic, click here.


Before we get into the tips, why is it important to stay hydrated? Dehydration can cause problems for anyone but in your LOWD you may notice increased confusion,...

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How does the brain work in dementia?

Uncategorized Mar 16, 2022

Over the past few weeks we have talked a lot about the brain, particularly the different lobes of the brain and how each lobe is related to symptoms seen in dementia. Today I want to take some time to talk about some other facts about the brain and touch on a few conditions that it is possible your LOWD may also have experienced. 


If you'd rather watch a video on this topic, click here!


Let’s start with a more general overview of the brain. 


A healthy human brain weighs about 3 pounds, is about the same size as two clenched fists put together, and contains about 85 billion cells or neurons. With normal aging and learning, brain cells die and new connections in the brain are formed. This is the underlying process of how we learn. 


In dementia, we know that there is damage or disease in some area of the brain, reducing the number of brain cells in that area. Further in conditions that cause dementia, we see the normal dying, and in...

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