Alzheimer's disease and other dementias gradually diminish a person's ability to communicate, which is devastating for the individual and their family. The Alzheimer's Association states communication with a person who has Alzheimer's and dementia requires patience, understanding and good listening skills.
There are many tips available for caregivers to assist with communicating with their loved one. Caregivers and professionals coping at any stage of dementia are invited to attend the "Improving Communication for Caregivers of Loved Ones with Alzheimer's and Dementia" presentation on Thursday, March 13, at 6:30 p.m. The event will take place at the Alzheimer's Association Western New York Chapter at People Inc. Seniors Unlimited, 2635 Delaware Ave., Buffalo.
The presentation will review how improving communication with a loved one can improve personal relationships, routines and time management. Creative activities also will be shared. April Caggiano, senior program manager for People Inc. Seniors Unlimited, and a certified "Laughter Yoga" leader, will provide "A Laughter Yoga" session.
More than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's. "Alzheimer's disease and related diseases causing dementia are neurological disorders," said Leilani Pelletier, executive director of the Alzheimer's Association, Western New York Chapter.
A variety of communication methods are important for caregivers to understand and practice. Pelletier said, "These disorders, affecting over 55,000 Western New Yorkers, not only impair memory, language and thought, but the five senses to varying degrees. Since all of these are used in communication, it is essential for those caring for someone with dementia to learn the best possible communication techniques in order to ensure the highest quality of life for the person they love."
People Inc.'s Seniors Unlimited is a unique social day program created to meet the special needs of those who have developed dementia or memory loss, which may have been caused by Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease, strokes, heart disease or any other illness. Seniors Unlimited benefits everyone in the family - not just the person who attends - providing much-needed respite to their caregivers. Participants receive socialization, activities, exercise, art therapy and a hot meal, all in a safe environment.
Tours of the People Inc. Seniors Unlimited program will be available after the presentation. Attendees can meet staff and learn how a loved one can participate in the program.
To attend the "Improving Communication for Caregivers of Loved Ones with Alzheimer's and Dementia" presentation at People Inc. Seniors Unlimited, call 716-768-2371.
People Inc. is a not-for-profit health and human services agency providing programs and services to more than 12,000 people with special needs, their families, and seniors throughout Western New York. Since 1971, People Inc. has assisted individuals to achieve greater degrees of independence and productivity.