A Deeper Perspective on Alzheimer's and other Dementias

Practical Tools with Spiritual Insights
A Deeper Perspective on Alzheimer's and other Dementias
Practical Tools with Spiritual Insights

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Pages : 192

Book Size : 7.5 x 10

ISBN-13 : 9781844096626

Imprint : Findhorn Press

On Sale Date : February 23, 2015

Format : Paperback Book

Illustrations : 6 color Illustrations

This book takes a compassionate, professional look at Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, offering insights into care and the spiritual dimensions of the diseases. Looking at soul-searing, life-testing situations as “fall-out blessings” and understanding the deeper lessons we learn by caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia.

About A Deeper Perspective on Alzheimer's and other Dementias

Soul-searing, life-testing situations have what some call “fall-out blessings.” The book is about understanding some of the deeper lessons we are exposed to through caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia.

We all want a cure. But in the meantime, while this illness is still with us, how can we create a quality of life for each person in each stage of the disease? How can we look deeper into situations that, at first glance, look hopeless and destructive in order to find opportunities for insight, inspiration, and great understanding of ourselves and those we love? How can we allow the full measure of the experience to unfold and be felt with as much of ourselves as we can bring to bear? This book will help people caring for those going through the difficult dementia journey find a way, through the tumultuous waves, to remain awake and open to the blessing of a journey that opens the heart, nurtures compassion, and ultimately enables each of us to be better human beings. It is also for those brave individuals living with memory loss illnesses, so that they be supported and allowed to live their experience fully in their own unique way, to express themselves, to love and be loved, and to be sheltered from harm--that with each stage of the progression, those around the person with dementia find ways to emphasize the loved one’s remaining strengths rather than spotlight their weaknesses. A person with dementia has a whole and well spirit and, in the broadest sense, their brain is a vehicle of self-expression; it does not define their essence. Finally, this book addresses head on the final stage of the disease, when the brain has exhausted all its compensatory ability and the individual is no longer able to take part in regular day-to-day life. At this advanced stage of the disease process, people with dementia are in a deep, internal state that caregivers generally cannot access and share. It can be a very disheartening time. This internal state separates the person with dementia from those around them; however, rather than thinking of it as a prison wall separating the person with dementia from the caregiver, it may be more helpful to think of the person having retreated into a cloistered existence for a while, affording them the time needed by the soul to attend to deeper aspect of the self on a spiritual level. This phase also allows those around the person to honor the vessel, or body, that has housed the loved in in this life and prepare to let them go. When ready the individual will know the time to leave, and if allowed, will let go. Coming from a rich professional background in caring, Megan Carnarius clearly outlines the different stages of dementia and highlights many practical aspects of dementia care, suggesting accessible tools for family and professionals alike. She also addresses the more subtle, spiritual dimensions of this illness with much compassion and understanding, offering new insights into areas that have not been explored in other books on the disease.
Table of Contents

Table of content

1 - The Foundation and Vision of Dementia Care
2 - First Contact with Memory Loss
3 - Introduction to a Philosophical Stance
4 - What I Understand about Dis-ease
5 - Encountering Chronic Illness
6 - Dementia as It Relates to the Elderly
7 - Advocates for More Humanized Care
8 - Recapitulation and Letting Go
9 - Describing the Stages of Dementia
Stage 1: Loss of Adult learning, The Early Stage
Stage 2: Loss of Adolescent Learning, The Early Mid Stage
Stage 3: Loss of Childhood Learning, The Late Mid Stage
Stage 4: Loss of Infant Learning, The Late Stage
Terminal Phase- Preparing for Transitioning
10 - The Boundaries of Quality of Life
11 - Alzheimer’s as a Way of Living More Than One Life at a Time
12 – Alzheimer’s As a Way of Allowing Matriarch and Patriarch Roles
to Transition to the Next Generation
13 - Alzheimer’s as an Opportunity to Be Cared For
14 – Alzheimer’s as a Way to Escape an Unbearable Situation
15 - Alzheimer’s as a Different Opportunity: The Medicine Wheel
16 – Alzheimer’s as a Way of Denying Change
17 – Alzheimer’s as a Way to Let Others Go On To What Is Next
18 – Alzheimer’s as a Path to Learning Compassion
19 – Alzheimer’s as a Way to Teach Compassion and Introspection
20 - Self Care
21 - The Importance of Humor
22 - When Does It End?
23 - Conclusion
Appreciation and Gratitude
Appendix: A Little History and Guidance on Medications for Behaviors

Author Bio
Alzheimer’s specialist Megan Carnarius, RN, is known for her warmly human touch in working with people with dementia and those who love them. Trained in Europe and the United States, she has international perspective and 25 years’ experience in designing and running memory care settings. In 1989, Megan Carnarius managed the first skilled memory care nursing setting in Boulder County. She started consulting in memory care design in 1996 and continues to assist owners with building designs as well as program and operational development. Megan also served on the Alzheimer’s education committee for 15 years. She is a sought-after family consultant, professional trainer, and lecturer.
Book Praise

Book Praise

"A Deeper Perspective on Alzheimer's and other Dementias is unlike most other books on the subject in that it doesn't relate the predictable progression of Alzheimer's or the strain on caregivers, but focuses instead on how to create an improved quality of life for everyone affected, at each stage of the disease. It's highly recommended for caregivers and families dealing with dementia and shows how to cultivate a sense of love, life, and support in the process of caregiving, right up to the final stages of the disease. Megan Carnarius has a professional background in caring (as a registered nurse, licensed nursing home administrator, and massage therapist with some 25 years' experience running memory care facilities) and links the different stages of dementia to different aspects of its care, offering tools that embrace the spiritual implications and challenges of illness as much as the physical and psychological stresses involved. The result is far more wide-ranging than most, and a top recommendation (above most others) for the position of 'most practical, useful' guide, packed with tools caregivers need to know about." D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

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