How-to guide for family caregivers of individuals with dementia offered

By Maria Bournoville

ADRC

Florence County

Health officials today released “Dementia Capable Wisconsin: A guide for family caregivers,” a new online resource for caregivers of family members with dementia.

Approximately 110,000 people in Wisconsin are living with dementia. This resource offers guidance for family members, friends, and loved ones so they can offer the best support and also stay healthy themselves.

At coming holiday gatherings, families may notice potential dementia symptoms among family members they haven’t seen in a while. The guide offers information about what’s happening to these older family members and can help families determine the next steps needed to keep these relatives safe.

A practical, hands-on resource, the guide includes very short videos showing ways caregivers can interact and assist these family members, including how to:

— Physically approach someone with dementia.

— Use reminiscence to redirect them.

— Respond to repeated questions and other symptoms of the disease.

— Deal with a family member with dementia who wants to leave their residence, among other real-life situations caregivers face.

The guide also provides basic information about dementia and helps caregivers understand the behavior changes family members may exhibit and learn techniques for managing these changes. To help with the emotional impact of caring for a family member with dementia, the guide offers tips on self-care for caregivers.

“Dementia Capable Wisconsin: A guide for family caregivers,” can be found on the DHS website at www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/dementia/family-caregiver-training.htm.

For additional information or resources on Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease or caregiving please contact the Aging and Disability Resource Center of Florence County by calling 715-528-4890, or by stopping by. The ADRC is located in the lower level of the Florence County Courthouse, 501 Lake Avenue. The office hours 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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