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tlwe223's picture Terri Weber, MSW, CSW
Elder Care Specialist
College or Department
Phone Number
(859) 218-0457
Email Address

Caring for an older loved one — by itself — can be a daunting task. When you add in your normal day-to-day responsibilities of home life and a job, the caregiving task can easily become overwhelming. Many caregivers struggle with balancing their own professional and personal responsibilities and caring for an older loved one. UK Elder Care can help! We are hosting our 4th Annual Senior Caregiving Conference Friday, November 8th at the Hilary J. Boone Center. The conference is made up of two great events: 1) A half-day Dementia Care Workshop featuring Kay Adams of Compassion Works 2) A half-day Senior Resource Fair. There will be over 40 different vendors representing many different facets of elder care. A list of all participating sponsors and exhibitors can be found here. Dementia Care Workshop Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life. And whether it be Alzheimer’s disease or Lewy Body or Vascular or Frontotemporal Dementia, it is a unique disease that creates an unusual situation where the affected person gradually recedes from their loved ones while still alive. Dementia is progressive, meaning symptoms start out slowly and gradually get worse. Our half-day dementia care workshop is entitled “Making Sense of the Mess.” Attendees will learn to make sense of the mess that comes with caring for someone with dementia. This includes exploring the underlying grief and loss involved, empowering people to change their perspectives and by understanding why self-care is not a selfish act, but an act of self-preservation. Event Schedule 8 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Registration and Light Breakfast 8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. Dementia Care Workshop, Session 1: Understanding Dementia: What is it? 9:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. Break 9:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Senior Resource Fair Opens 9:45 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. Dementia Care Workshop, Session 2: Anticipatory Grief and Ambiguous Loss 10:45 a.m. - 11 a.m. Break 11 a.m. - Noon Dementia Care Workshop, Session 3: The Power of Perspective and Self-Care 1:30 p.m. Senior Resource Fair Closes Before the Senior Caregiving Conference: Attendees get more out of the conference if they come prepared. Here’s what you can do: 1. Talk with your loved one about their preferences and desires as they age. Don't assume that you know what type of care they may or may not want. Ask. Find out what they envision for their future. Where do they see themselves living next year, in two years or even five years from now? Would they prefer to stay at home with outside help, or would they rather live in a care facility? 2. Have a conversation with them about their finances. As difficult as this may be, it is extremely important for future care planning. What funding do they have, and where is it? Are you legally able to access it if they are not able to do so? Caregiving can be expensive. Do you know the average hourly rate for an in-home care companion? Do you know what an assisted, personal care or memory-care facility charges monthly? These can be very realistic future costs for your loved one and they need to be addressed. 3. Look around and observe their situation. Has their normally well-kept home become neglected and unkempt? Has their personal hygiene become questionable? Would a few hours of assistance each week help your loved one stay independent and safe? Or is a more constant presence needed to assist with personal care and/or medical management? 4. Review your loved one’s necessary legal documents. Do they have an advanced healthcare directive/living will, a durable POA (power of attorney), a medical power of attorney/healthcare surrogate and a will? When someone becomes unable to speak for themselves, these documents assure that their wishes regarding finances, healthcare, long-term care and end of life care will be known. 5. Make yourself familiar with your loved one’s medications, medical equipment and treatment plans. Have you noticed that your older loved one is having more difficulty taking their medications on time? Have you noticed confusion when talking with them about managing their medical condition? These are some of the questions you should be asking yourself. The Senior Resource Fair will have the experts on hand to answer your questions and lead you in the right direction. Whether you are noticing changes now or just want to be prepared for the future, please join us Friday November 8th at the Hilary J. Boone Center for the 4th Annual Senior Caregiving Conference. Knowing what services and support are available can help you keep in balance with your personal life and your caregiving duties. Terri Weber UK Elder Care