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December 2nd, 2016

Aging with Grace

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It’s been several months since we began writing this column and it would be helpful to know how we’re doing. Do you read the column often and do you find the information helpful? Please take a few minutes to give us your thoughts; call Sue or Barb at 802.476.3630 or email pibarre@giffordhealthcare.org. Thank you.

Dear Grace,
I just started caring for my mother who has a variety of things going on with her health, the main illness being dementia. I came to live with her just recently and I’m still trying to figure everything out. What resources are available to help me, other than her physician who has been great? He mentioned something about caregiver support and programs that might be able to help me learn more about everything but, I’m ashamed to say, I wasn’t really ready to listen. Didn’t take me long to realize I have no clue!! Where do I start?
Desperate,
George

Dear George,
First of all, you are not alone in this journey. Let’s start with some basic resources, some of which you may already know about or may have utilized:

-Central Vermont Home Health & Hospice (www.cvhhh.org)
•Agency provides support in case management, health & nursing services, etc.
-Central Vermont council on Aging (www.cvcoa.org)
•Agency provides support to elders in numerous areas including: case management, legal services, caregiver support, meals & nutrition, health insurance counseling, mental health counseling, housing & transportation. Senior Helpline: 1.800.642.5119 (Central Vermont area), Toll Free 1.877.379.2600, general information 802.479.0531
-Project Independence Adult Day Service (www.pibarre.org)
•Caregiver Support Group meets the first Wednesday of each month from 4:30–6 p.m. For more information, call Sue or Barb at 802.476.3630 or email us pibarre@giffordhealthcare.org
•Adult Day Services; for more information, email us pibarre@giffordhealthcare.org or call us at 802.476.3630
-Memory Café (www.montpeliermemorycafe.net)
•A place for people with memory loss and their care partners to meet. Meets the 2nd Saturday of each month at the Montpelier Senior Center at 10 a.m. Call 802.229.9630 for more information
-Alzheimer’s Association, Vermont Chapter (www.alz.org/vermont)
•The Alzheimer’s Association has valuable information on anything that pertains to caring for someone or support for the caregiver. They also have a 24/7 Helpline: 1.800.272.3900

I hope this information is useful to you and everyone caring for a loved one with dementia. I don’t want to overwhelm you so I kept it to the basics this time. As you move through this journey with your mother, please do not hesitate to contact me any time.
Sincerely,
Grace

If you have questions related to caring for an elder loved one or other individual with disabilities or health issues, please email me, deargrace@pibarre.org or write me, c/o Project Independence, 81 N. Nain St. – Ste 1, Barre, VT 05641-4283

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