Dementia & Alzheimer’s Care, The Black Hole in Our Society

dementia care

Caring for loved ones with dementia or alzheimer’s is one of the hardest jobs. Besides the physical and emotional care there is the care of meeting their daily needs.  It’s well known that dementia and alzheimer’s is a progressive disease where if the individual lives long enough, they will constantly need advanced care.

Because dementia and alzheimer’s begin mostly with the impairment of mental abilities there seems to be a black hole in our society when it comes to finding long term care solutions for these individuals. It becomes a very long and tough journey for the individuals themselves and also for their family and loved ones who are trying to get them the best care possible.

FamilyAffaires.com Contributor, Dr. Dan Gottlieb turns the tables today on FamilyAffaires.com Family Expert & Community Advocate, Roseann Vanella. Dr. Dan conducts the interview where Roseann shares her and her family’s personal story of love and frustration in trying to find a long term care facility for her Dad.

Roseann and Dr. Dan hope that by sharing this story it will help to educate people on this important topic for our growing aging population and continue to bring awareness.  They also hope that other families going through this similar struggle finds comfort in knowing they are not alone.

Feel free to leave your thoughts and comments below. Through sharing we can let our voices be heard and empower people to make change.

 

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About Dan Gottlieb

Dr. Dan Gottlieb has been practicing psychology since 1969.Since 1985, Daniel Gottlieb has been hosting “Voices in the Family,” an award-winning mental health call-in radio show aired on WHYY 90.9 FM, Philadelphia’s local public radio station. He has also previously published a total of four books. His most recent, “The Wisdom of Sam: Observations on Life from an Uncommon Child,”. In it, Dan tells of some of the remarkable insights shared by his grandson Sam who is on the autism spectrum. All of his royalties are donated to children’s charities. Dan is also a contributor to the Dana & Christopher Reeves Foundation.

4 thoughts on “Dementia & Alzheimer’s Care, The Black Hole in Our Society

  1. Julia Scalise

    Roseann- my heart goes out to you and anyone facing caregiver decisions for any loved one. I was a caregiver for both parents, Mom had Huntington’s and Dad was a dialysis patient, post heart surgery kidney failure complication. I cared for both parents at home. I was fortunate to find good help for the hours I could not be home. However, during the years of care, Mom 6 years and Dad 8 yrs ( simultaneously for 6 yrs), they each were in transition facility situations post hospital discharge before coming home. There was not ONE facility that worked. Most days it was nothing more than a frustrating nightmare till I could get that parent home. The only thing I can say to those struggling is do the best you can, take it one day at a time, there may never be a good answer but only the best answer for that problem or chaos of the moment. Take care of YOU, and do the best you can for your loved one each day, but know that your best changes day to day. Be patient with them, and be patient and forgiving of yourself.

    Reply
  2. Roseann Vanella

    Julia thanks so much for you comments & support. We can only do the best we can but there needs to be a shift in our society & health care system to make sure that people with any kind of mental illness receive necessary care. The decision of where my Dad can or can’t go is based solely upon each facilities criteria or no criteria at all. There needs to be regulations & checks and balances so that this population does not continue to fall into the black hole and their family members have some alternatives.

    Reply
  3. Janet Belford

    Roseann–Wonderful job on this. You’re so right about the cultural difference in the U.S., and how we need to do a better job of caring for our elders. I know this conversation wasn’t easy for you. You do a fabulous job helping to care for your parents!

    Reply
  4. Paula Susan

    I am in it right now and am scared about what will happen to us. I watched my mother I wrote for the blog “The Long Goodbye.

    We are not married. Together, and I am living the dementia every day. He is stubborn, doesn’t want meds – yes there are side effects. I don’t have access to any money that will support any care he needs.

    I am in private practice since 1982. It is my passion, my joy to participate in the deep healing work I do. I am privileged and committed to my clients.

    If he is here while I am in my office with clients, he will be intrusive and especially if I am the one to do the physical care giving. Love and compassion I can definitely do.

    I need your wisdom. I’ve always cared a bout you and value your wisdom.
    Paula

    Reply
  5. Paula Susan

    Roseann, you already know how special you are to me and so many others. However, I know very well how not to be biased. My career requires that. Know the facts and feel for each person and where they (psychologically and emotionally came from) and then treat each one with that knowledge to have a plan for healing. So, you can believe me when I say that you were eloquent, touching, loving and practical. Wow!
    I love you,
    Paula

    Reply

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