Alzheimer Society of B.C. webinars allow residents to learn from home. (Photo submitted)

Alzheimer Society of B.C. offering weekly webinars on long distance caregiving

Learn practical strategies about supporting family members living with dementia from afar

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to dramatically the way of life in the Cariboo, providing support for the region’s most vulnerable residents is more important than ever before.

While maintaining physical distancing during this time is essential, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. is urging area residents not to forget about people living with dementia and their caregivers.

“During this time of increased isolation, many people affected by dementia may feel disconnected from support networks and will face unexpected challenges,” says Laurie De Croos, the Society’s support and education coordinator for the Northern Interior, Skeena and Peace region.

One way the Alzheimer Society of B.C. is offering support is through free weekly webinars, including one on May 13 that addresses the timely topic of long-distance caregiving.

Read More: Seniors staying safe, isolated at Cariboo Place in Williams Lake

A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia affects the whole family.

“A person living with dementia needs more and more help as the disease progresses – and family members are often the first people to provide this help,” adds De Croos. “However, when family members aren’t living with the person – often in other cities, provinces or even countries – caregiving can present special challenges, even under normal circumstances. Long-distance caregiving is even more of a challenge in these uncertain times.”

Tips for long-distance caregiving

Caring for someone long distance is even more complicated now that physical distancing and travel restrictions are in place. Staying in touch requires regular communication. Staying in touch from a distance requires regular communication and involving others to help. Here are some suggestions:

· Establish a routine: An established routine can be reassuring for everyone. Make a video call with FaceTime or other software, call or write letters/emails to exchange news and find out how things are going. Keep in mind, however, that equipment may only be useful for those in the early stages of the disease.

· Contact the health-care provider: Arrange to meet the person’s health-care provider to get to know them. Establish a way to keep in contact.

· Maintain contact with other caregivers: Stay in touch with any caregivers nearby. This may include a neighbour, a friend, or a relative who lives with, or near, your family member. It could also be a social worker or a staff person from a local Alzheimer Society. Be sure to let these people know that you appreciate their help. Keep in mind the different viewpoints of close and distant relatives. On the one hand, you may be the first to notice a problem. Confusion or memory loss may have developed so gradually that others may not have noticed the change. On the other hand, because you are not there every day, you may not realize how difficult the situation is for the regular caregiver.

· Support each other: If another family member is providing care, talk with them and offer your support. Try to understand each other’s feelings and points of view and talk over what can be done. Find ways to support each other and to share responsibilities.

Attend a webinar

To learn more about caregiving while physically separate from a person living with dementia or other topics related to the disease, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. invites you to sign up for one of our free webinars. Upcoming webinars include:

· Long-distance caregiving (Wednesday, May 13, 2 or 7 p.m.): Practical tips on providing meaningful caregiving support from a distance. For caregivers.

· “Why do I feel this way?” Coping with changes brought by dementia (Wednesday, May 20, 2 p.m.): Explore change and loss and the uncertainty of the dementia experience.

· Accessing care services during COVID-19 (Friday, May 27, 2 p.m.): Learn strategies for navigating changes in accessing services and how to get the most out of your interactions with care providers.

To register for any of these webinars, please visit alzbc.org/webinars.

The Alzheimer Society of B.C. is committed to ensuring that people affected by dementia have the confidence and skills to live the best life possible. First Link® dementia support is the Alzheimer Society of B.C.’s suite of programs and services designed to help them. First Link® is available throughout the progression of the disease, from diagnosis (or before) to end-of-life care.

Connect to First Link® by asking your health-care provider for a referral or by calling the First Link® Dementia Helpline at 1-800-936-6033. The Helpline is available Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Information and support is also available in Punjabi (1-833-674-5003) and in Cantonese or Mandarin (1-833-674-5007), available Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Do you have a comment about this story? email:
editor@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Williams Lake

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RCMP ask for assistance from public in hit and run of Canoe Creek pedestrian

The 33-year-old man was sent to hospital with serious injuries

Williams Lake Highway 20 bump to be repaired once load restrictions are lifted

A historical slide area is actively causing ripples in the road

First annual Forest Service Road Clean Up For Wildlife goes until May 31

Taking place from May 16-31, the contest is open for anyone to enter

LIVE: Procession to honour Snowbirds Capt. Jennifer Casey comes to Halifax

Snowbirds service member died in a crash in Kamloops one week ago

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping the Williams Lake Tribune continue its mission to provide trusted local news

RCMP facing ‘systemic sustainability challenges’ due to provincial policing role

Provinces, territories and municipalities pay anywhere from 70 to 90 per cent of the cost of the RCMP’s services

One man dead after standoff with Chilliwack RCMP

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the RCMP’s role in the death

B.C. employers worry about safety, cash flow, second wave in COVID-19 restart

A survey found 75 per cent of businesses worry about attracting customers

Ex-BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver says province came close to early election

Disagreement centred on the LNG Canada project in northern B.C.

Canada’s NHL teams offer options to season-ticket holders

Canadian teams are offering refunds, but also are pushing a number of incentives to let them keep the money

B.C. premier says lessons to learn from past racism during response to pandemic

B.C. formally apologized in the legislature chamber in 2008 for its role in the Komagata Maru tragedy

Snowbirds to remain at Kamloops Airport indefinitely after fatal crash

small contingent of the Snowbirds team is staying in Kamloops, acting as stewards of the jets

Most Read