Caring for a loved one with dementia can be difficult. Every person with dementia is unique, and their disease may progress more slowly or rapidly.
As such, carers need to deal with an onset of symptoms from loved ones such as moodiness, forgetfulness, and language loss severe enough to interfere with their daily lives. Hence, carers need to have the right resources to understand dementia better.
Books are great in providing carers with information about dementia, and they can also be a source of comfort. More importantly, these books can ease the sense of frustration and isolation most carers feel.
So here are some of our favourite books that we hope can help you on your journey as a carer.
The 36-Hour Day, by Nancy Mace and Peter Rabins
Often referred to as the ‘gold standard’ or ‘bible’ book on dementia guides, The 36-Hour Day is a must-read for families caring for an Alzheimer’s or dementia patient. Both Nancy Mace and Peter Rabins are experts in dementia and Alzheimer’s, and they have decades of experience dealing with dementia.
The book talks about dementia care with a compassionate yet authoritative approach and provides carers with practical tips on how they can improve their loved one’s life with dementia. It also shows carers how to cope with their own emotions and needs during trying times.
Described by fans as a powerful and eye-opening portrayal of Alzheimer’s, Before I Forget is written by B.Smith, and her husband, Dan Gasby. It tells the story of how Smith was unexpectedly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at the age of 66 and her subsequent journey with it.
Smith realised that Alzheimer’s is a condition experienced by millions of people each year, not just her alone. This had prompted her to tell her story to the world in hopes of spreading awareness. Readers of this book have described it as an accurate description of what it’s like living with the disease for both people with dementia and their families.
This is another must-read book for carers that provides practical information on how to give care to people with Alzheimer’s and dementia. Paula Spencer Scott is a consultant and lecturer and has written many books on family health and well-being.
Surviving Alzheimer’s provides carers with tips on how to best help a loved one with memory loss. The book covers essential topics such as reducing family friction, advice for out-of-town caregivers, and how to manage frustrating behaviours. This is a must-read if you’re looking for a carer-specific book with an easy-to-follow guide.
This award-winning and national bestseller book is written by Jarem Sawatsky, an American Professor of Peace and Conflict Transformation Studies. Sawatsky is diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease, which has also affected his family members before him.
Dancing with Elephants is a reflective book on mindfulness and encouragement, even in times of adversity. The author writes about how he learnt to accept his prognosis and dance with the ‘elephant in the room’ instead of living in fear of it. It’s also an uplifting book on accepting the inevitable change that happens to the mind, body, and soul when faced with illness.
Sarah Viola is a specialist in dementia care, and is committed to teaching carers how to improve their loved one’s quality of life and theirs. When Waves Rise is useful for carers because it offers excellent instructions on navigating the tricky and frustrating parts of dementia care.
The book provides dual insights on what dementia is like for both carers and patients, and it then gives practical actions on how to handle changes in behaviour. Sarah’s ideas are kind-hearted and innovative, and her book has gotten the seal of approval from many carers and healthcare workers.
Navigating dementia care can be tricky, and we hope that these books help shed some light on the disease and ease the emotional burden felt by many carers. If you need more assistance in taking care of your loved one, CareAbout is here to provide support to all carers and their loved ones.
For experienced help with finding a suitable Home Care or Nursing Home, contact our team for a personalised discussion and arrangement.