Alzheimer’s Association classes held in Ostrander

Community members and staff at Care & Rehab – Ostrander have a better understanding of Alzheimer’s disease after the center hosted Alzheimer’s Association classes earlier this month.

Three educational classes covering the basics, effective communication strategies, and understanding and responding to dementia-related behaviors were held in the assisted living building, which is attached to skilled nursing and the rehab wing. The community, family and staff were invited and learned new informative information and techniques. 

“Overall it was a great presentation,” reported Tracy Adams, director of nursing in Ostrander.

The basics, which was the introductory class, taught the differences between dementia and Alzheimer’s disease and types of reversible diseases that mimic dementia, risk factors for the disease, and different areas of the brain that the diseases affect and how to prepare for the doctor’s appointment.  A cognitive test was given to the participants to see how many words each one remembered. The participants in all the classes were also taught how communication changes throughout the disease process and affects all five of the senses.

Memory diseases are increasing in the United States today.  “I personally know of one man with early-onset dementia that struck him in his 50s.  It’s important everyone keeps up on the current research and learn as much as we can,” said Grant Thayer, CEO of Care & Rehab.      

For those that could not attend, handouts were saved for distribution and will be held at the nurses’ station at Care & Rehab – Ostrander, 305 Minnesota Street.  Community members are free to come by and also ask the nurses and staff what they learned, noted Thayer.