Caregiving on the Move: Tips for Easier Outings

Let’s face it: Getting out and about with a loved one who has cognitive or mobility challenges can be a logistical nightmare. The equipment, timing and transportation mishaps are often a comedy of errors — like the time I left the trunk wide open for two hours after retrieving Mom’s wheelchair, or when Dad, who has Alzheimer’s disease, spits his food on the floor at a restaurant. Despite the headaches, I’ve remained determined to get my parents (and Dad’s service dog, Mr. …

10 dispositivos imprescindibles para cuidadores

In English | He cuidado a mi familia por más de 30 años, y he descubierto que hay algunos dispositivos que no solamente hacen mi vida más fácil, sino hacen que la vida de las personas que cuido sea más segura y feliz. Algunos de estos artículos útiles son muy sencillos y otros, de tecnología de punta. Los precios pueden variar mucho, pero la mayoría son relativamente baratos y uno de mis favoritos es incluso hecho en casa. Puedes encontrar …

Hospital to Rehab to Home: How to Ease Transitions

I’ve recently been helping a friend who has been managing her mother’s transitions from a hospital to a rehab facility and then to another rehab facility that now wants to send her home before she, or her family, is ready. It reminded me of how tough family caregiving transitions can be. I’ve been through so many of them with my parents and my sister — some smooth, others unexpected and rocky. As a study in the American Journal of Nursing found, …

A Caregiver’s Guide to Staying Sane

“How do you stay sane?” That’s the question a reporter asked me recently at the National Press Foundation after a talk I gave about being a family caregiver. As blunt as it sounds, it was a very good question. And I’ve been thinking about it ever since. I have been caregiving for nearly 35 years, the past six at a very intensive level. During that time I’ve worked full time; traveled a great deal; written two books; maintained a long-distance …

10 Must-Have Gadgets for Caregivers

En español | I’ve been a family caregiver for more than 30 years, and I’ve found that there are some gadgets that not only make my life much easier but also make the lives of those I’m caring for much safer and happier. Some of these handy items are simple, and others are high-tech. Prices can vary widely but most of the gadgets are relatively inexpensive, and one of my favorites is even homemade. You can find all of these products …

4 Tips for Emptying a Loved One’s House on a Budget

When my sister Karen died, almost six months ago, I knew, amid my shock and grief, that I had a huge job ahead of me as executor of her estate. There was the paperwork, of course — her will, finances, home mortgage, etc. — which has been complicated, to say the least. But emptying her home and preparing it for sale have been the biggest hurdles. Her three-bedroom house was packed to the brim, and there was no money in …