Summertime means a lot of things to a lot of different people. For some, it means spending endless hours outside soaking up the sunshine. For others, it means staying home in the air conditioning to avoid the intense temperatures. No matter which group you fall into, there’s always an opportunity to educate yourself and learn more about those you love with Alzheimer’s Disease.
We know it can be tricky sorting through different resources on Alzheimer’s. That is why we put together our top five books for caregivers. Each book gives unique insight, whether it’s focused on the history behind Alzheimer’s or ways to implement the Best Friends approach. Happy Reading!
1. The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People With Alzheimer’s Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life
By: Nancy L. Mace and Peter V. Rabins
This is an extensive book for families that are new to caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s. It covers all aspects of care including emotional issues, financial details, and day-to-day coping with dementia behaviors. You can also find valuable information about nursing homes and other types of residential living in these pages.
2. The Best Friends Approach to Alzheimer’s Care, Revised 1st Edition
By: Virginia Bell and David Troxel
We love this book because it’s a program that focuses on adapting to each person’s remaining strengths and abilities. It touches on the essential elements of friendship: respect, empathy, support, trust, and humor which create an effective care model. It discusses how to ensure the highest quality of life for someone with Alzheimer’s by preventing catastrophic episodes and making each day as consistent as possible.
3. The Forgetting: Alzheimer’s: Portrait of an Epidemic
By: David Shenk
David Shenk, a journalist and NPR commentator, helps every caregiver explore the nature of memory and the history of Alzheimer’s from its discovery to present. He discusses the role of scientists, caregivers, and policymakers in the treatment history of the disease. This book is great for laying a foundation in your understanding of Alzheimer’s.
4. Alzheimer’s Basic Caregiving – An ABC Guide
By: Kathy Laurenhue
Kathy combines practicality and lightheartedness to provide advice for family and professional caregivers that’s easy-to-implement. The main topics in this guide include patterns of progression, the logic behind behaviors, and effective communication.
5. A Dignified Life: The Best Friends Approach to Alzheimer’s Care – A Guide for Family Caregivers
By: Virginia Bell and David Traxel
Oftentimes feelings of frustration and burnout can accompany the task of caring for an Alzheimer’s patient. In A Dignified Life, David Troxel explains that the best approach involves treating the person like a best friend and working from their strengths, not their weaknesses. If you’re looking to dive a little deeper and go beyond the typical tips, this book is a great place to start. It will take advantage of your instinctive desire to build friendships and tap into the intuitive aspect of caregiving that is part of our every nature.
After years of providing care, we know that supporting a loved one with Alzheimer’s requires more than just a building – it requires love, wisdom, and compassion. We hope these books can help you deepen your understanding of Alzheimer’s and give some insight into our healing mission. If you have any questions, please reach out to us at (502) 459-9681.