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On Caregiving With Alzheimer’s Patients

CaregiversA few years ago I was asked by my friend and fellow interfaith minister, William Grant, to work with the senior population on the 2nd floor of the Hallmark Senior Residence in Battery Park City, New York. These residents had Alzheimer’s. I said “yes” I would work with them, but I didn’t have a clue what to do. So the first thing I did was to reach out to someone who did, which turned out to be an amazing music therapist at The Jewish Home and Hospital on W. l06th Street, NYC. It was through being part of a music group of Alzheimer’s patients that I learned about communicating with them through music and photographs. it is a part of their brain that connects to the present moment. It is quite amazing to experience the connection when sometimes nothing else seems to work. I will never forget the first time seeing how the music therapist took one of the patients who seemed absolutely motionless in his wheelchair and started singing to him and the next moment he began whistling and singing the words to the song. It was an amazing experience to be part of. As it turns out I also do publicity and one of my new clients has written a book for caregivers called “Communicating with Alzheimer’s. It’s a powerful reference book for caregivers showing them powerful ways to connect. It can be so frustrating and painful trying to communicate, especially I found when the patient begins repeating over and over with the same phrase. Sometimes I want to scream, but this book gives you support with a situation like this. The author and I have a real heart connection because she knows I understand what it is like to be with this segment of the population. So, are you a caregiver with someone who has Alzheimer’s? How are you doing with it? We would appreciate hearing from you.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, October 1st, 2009 at 8:44 pm and is filed under Industry News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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