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123 of 124 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute must for caregivers
For those of us who are caregivers, this book is a lifesaver. Before reading this book I was certain that many of the behaviors that my family member exhibits were unique to her. While I often read about Alzheimer's, I never read anything that made me stop and realize that, first, I am not alone, and second, that there are ways that I can handle situations better. This...
Published on July 27, 2007 by Donna M. Blancero

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
This is the book the Alzheimer's Association recommends you read. I read parts of it. But did not find it that helpful, but discouraging.
Published 8 months ago by Cindy


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123 of 124 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute must for caregivers, July 27, 2007
This review is from: The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, 4th (Paperback)
For those of us who are caregivers, this book is a lifesaver. Before reading this book I was certain that many of the behaviors that my family member exhibits were unique to her. While I often read about Alzheimer's, I never read anything that made me stop and realize that, first, I am not alone, and second, that there are ways that I can handle situations better. This book is full of great suggestions on how to deal with the many behavioral issues that are exhibited by those with Alzheimer's and dementia.

Whenever I have an especially difficult day, I go online to the Alzheimer's page and remind myself how difficult it is for my family member. This book drove home that message, yet more importantly provided me with some tools on how to deal with these issues. I cannot stress enough how much I thought our situation and the behaviors were unique; it is liberating to realize that they are not. As well, understanding why the person exhibits such behaviors makes it much easier to respond correctly.

I wish I could thank the authors personally for this book. I hope they both know that their wisdom, concern and awareness of the Alzheimer patient has made a difference for me, and I am certain has made a difference for many others.

Caregivers -- buy this book, you will find some stress greatly diminished.
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Guide, April 10, 2007
By 
Arthur Jones (Iron Mountain Lake, Mo) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a excellent book and reference for those learning to deal with Alzheimer. Plenty of resources and ideas of what to look for when caring for someone with this disease. You can get a good idea of what to expect and how to help those suffering with this devastating disease. Easy to understand and read. Can't recommend this book enough.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE 36-HOUR DAY continues to be the 'bible' of recommendation for any caregiver whose family member suffers from dementia., February 7, 2007
When THE 36-HOUR DAY appeared in its original edition it was unprecedented in its information for families struggling to care for people with Alzheimer Disease and other dementias: now this updated 4th edition in large print includes new details on diagnostic evaluation methods, new medications and research, and new social and legal issues involved, and will find a place not only on health and public library shelves, but in the home shelves of caregivers searching for information. From financial aid and nursing homes to alternatives to treatments and living arrangements, THE 36-HOUR DAY continues to be the 'bible' of recommendation for any caregiver whose family member suffers from dementia.

Diane C. Donovan

California Bookwatch
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From an RN & daughter of a patient: my experiences so far; & praise for this book, July 19, 2011
By 
gilly8 "gilly8" (Mars, the hotspot of the U.S.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, 4th (Paperback)
I first read this book while looking for something to send my aunt whose husband had developed SEVERE dementia/ Parkinson's disease (which can go together) and literally did not know any members of his family. They were keeping at home & refused to send him to a nursing home of any kind. (I can agree with that if there is enough money for help or family to help, though I think the toll it took on his extended family over 10 years was too much.) My aunt pulled in her large extended family & in the later stages had to hire help as well. She had---over time-- a hospital bed, a lifting device (he was a large man)and every other thing you can imagine needing. This went on for over 10 yrs since she had him treated for any illness to the full extent. I disagreed with this since I felt he had no good quality of life, and if kept comfortable would have been able to pass on far earlier. He had also told members of the family he did not want to be "kept living" if he became totally incapacitated. ( I never told my aunt that I disagreed w/ her point of view; but talked with some of my cousins who felt they had to do what their mom wanted.)

My aunt found this book helpful as did I. Even though I am an RN, I'd had no special training in this area, and learned a lot. It gave me a huge amount of insight for patients as well.
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Now my mother, age 91, has moderate Alzheimers. She slowly developed it over the past 6 or so years. When she began to show symptoms, I took her to a neurologist and he had her seen by a pyscho-neurologist as well. She was given a brain scan & had a series of tests with the psycho-neurologist over 4 hours (split up because she would become too tired.) This gave us the right diagnosis which is very important....you need to see a specialist for a diagnosis in my opinion. Other medical conditions: small strokes called TIAs (transient ischemic attacks) of the brain, certain thyroid conditions untreated, falls with blows to the head, loss of consciousness for whatever reason that cuts off oxygen to the brain for a while....some of these can be treated or at least need to be treated differently than dementia (the catch-all term which INCLUDES Alzheimer's).

My mother was placed on the prescription medicine Aricept but had side effects. She was changed to the 24 hr/day patch Exelon (also a prescription). In my opinion they have slowed the process of the disease though not stopped it or cured it, of course.

I keep in touch with the neurologist to let him now how she is doing; as well as bringing her in to see him occasionally. She, of course, is in "denial" that anything is wrong with her except for slight memory problems. However, its clear her short term memory is worse and worse: I think I don't need to describe it to anyone whose dealt with this. For example she has no clear memory of the last 10+ years, thinks she's "visiting" me (as opposed to living with us) and so on. I don't try to correct these things, only some rare things which I must try to "re-orient" her on.

She stays really active: putters in the garden, walks her dog (very short walks, and I think sometimes the dog leads her home!) And still can read large print books and magazines, though she'll forget the plot or if it's too difficult set it aside for another book. One favorite book she's read four times & each time it's new! She has a TV of course, and a sort of Mother-in-law suite in our house since the kids are grown now. Basically I do encourage her to keep busy and active, as just sitting or lying in bed weakens muscles & contributes to lethargy & depression. There is a woman hired from a Senior Care agency, who comes three times a week to take her to lunch, or a movie, or do "arts & crafts" which she enjoys. A good nursing home would have outings & activities such as these, & some form of exercise, even if only "chair" exercise.

We do have the usual safety measures in her bathroom: a bathtub chair, a shower head on a long attachment so she doesn't have to stand up at all to shower/bathe. She walks with a cane, and I truly think her lifelong activity and attention to her diet have helped keep her healthier than many others.
(She was still using an exercise bike daily through her 80's).

One major problem, developing more and more, is her paranoia about certain close family members, for no reason. At some point she will need a nursing home if she lives that long, as I don't have a large extended family to help.

One thing I want to mention: my mother was a teacher for 40 years, was in the Women's Army Air Corps in WWII, has a Master's degree in teaching, & always watched her diet & exercised...she does not fit (nor did my late uncle) the sterotype that keeping your mind active will PREVENT Alzheimer's.
This is quite concerning for me, my cousins, & I can only hope the government will push for more research for this hugely increasing problem.
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One thing we did as soon as she began showing symptoms, was to see a lawyer: she, my spouse and I (I'm her only child & she is widowed). We renewed our wills, did new living wills, and also---& my mother DID clearly understand this----drew up a living will for her, and she gave me financial & health care power of attorney. Both of those have come in VERY useful many times since then. I have been able to put her few bills & bill payments online, I have been able to pick out the "gap" health insurance for her, talk to doctors about her, and so on. (Prior to that, she'd been "bouncing" checks, had no control of her budget & I have no idea what she gave to the charities---legitimate and not--who deluged her as they do all elderly....I wrote to most asking them to take her off their lists.

She had always stated, long before becoming ill with this, that she wanted no "heroic" lifesaving measures to prolong her life if there was no good quality of life. Knowing we have this in a legal document is very helpful. I would never allow her to suffer, but I know how good hospice is in keeping people comfortable and I would go that route if she became very ill ---as opposed to having surgeries done or feeding tubes inserted, CPR done, etc. which I know she would not want.

In summary this book is by far THE best one I've seen on this subject. The second best, I think, is the Mayo Clinic Guide to Alzheimer's Disease. Mayo Clinic Guide Alzheimer's Disease

On the AARP.org website there is a lot of good information on dealing with elderly parents/relatives who need help: in "elder-proofing" a home; in how to choose a nursing home, and so on. It also covers Hospice care in depth. It is an excellent site.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Help for the family, April 1, 2007
By 
Tami Greene (Knoxville, TN United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, 4th (Paperback)
This book has been the single most helpful tool my family has been given to help us help my mother as she progresses with Alzheimer's Disease. While other books have touched on many of the topics in this book, no where else have we found as much practical information on how to avoid confrontations with her; ways to improve her daily living; ideas to keep her involved with us and to provide meaning to her life; questions to ask her doctors; types of resources that are available (depending on your area); what to expect as the disease progresses; and how to help each other as we take on the many different roles needed to provide care for her.

I highly recommend this book to others; in fact, I have purchased multiple copies to share with family members and donate to my local library - that's how helpful and important this book is!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Succinct and Thorough, May 6, 2007
By 
Beth Bond (Bradenton,FL USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is an exemplary book,thorough and well written re the information essential to dealing with a loved one with alzheimers. I couldn't put it down...not that I enjoyed what I read...but how appropriate it was to the situation at hand.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent help for hard times, January 11, 2007
By 
Bonita Kale (Cleveland, Ohio, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I mentioned this to a priest who works with hospice, and she told me it was the standard work for families on the topic of dementia.

It really is a very practical, humane, and sensible work. A lot of good ideas, with no perky guarantees that this or that one will work for everyone. A lot of needed reminders that the person isn't acting this way out of malice. A lot of compassion for the feelings, both sad and angry, of the caregiver.

I took this book from the library, read it, and immediately bought a large print edition for my mother.

Even if you aren't the primary caregiver, you need to read this to fully understand what's happening back home with Dad or Mom.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, July 1, 2007
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This review is from: The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, 4th (Paperback)
Well-written, easy to read, and comprehansive..excellent resource! I have already recommended it to others facing a future as a caregiver.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars outstanding for information, application, and inspiration, July 27, 2008
This book, now in its 4th edition, is absolutely one of the finest books that has been written regarding Alzheimer's Disease and the process of care giving. Full of detail about the disease, this book also takes it a step further, providing very practical information on care giving, making a home / care giving setting a safe place, and, frankly, providing suggestions for periodic care giving to the care giver. Throughout the several editions, I have come to recommend, loan, give, patients and care givers this book perhaps 50 times or more, and, every time I hear the same thing - "what a helpful, fantastic book!". Published by Johns Hopkins and holding a 95% 5 star rating on Amazon, it's unbeatable. it's 600 pages long. that might, at first blush, seem like a lot to read. none of us who give care to others can set aside 10 to 60 hours (depending on your reading speed) right away to read it all and made sense of it all. Take your time. It's not a race to get through it - it's a race to understand the contents - take your time and begin to put into practice an additional suggestion each day. This book is a labor of love and is worth the price, used, new, and way more (oh no - don't tell Johns Hopkins that or they'll start charging us a lot more!!). Best of luck, and be sure to find for yourself a support group in your community or on-line.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The 36-Hour Day, February 20, 2007
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This review is from: The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life, 4th (Paperback)
Describes perfectly the changes taking place in my mother as she developes dementia. Helps me understand what is taking place and it is very helpful to know how other people have dealt with the same situations.

A must read for any one who has a loved one with this disease.
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