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At Skylark, we care for many older adults suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.  We’ve seen firsthand the challenges and struggles that families face caring for these individuals.  We’ve also born witness to the successes that families have when they utilize the Skylark Adult Day centers and Home Care. Our families care about the quality of Skylark’s memory care. Our families often show up to our educational events focusing on how to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s.

To help our Members and families, we developed a framework we call BrainBloom for organizing our care of those with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. The framework has five components: Engage, Mind, Exercise, Fuel and Spirit.  We’ve developed the framework while considering extensive research into what does and does not work when helping care for individuals with dementia.  Let me briefly explain the framework we call BrainBloom:

  • Engage: specifically refers to social engagement.  It is found in one-on-one interactions, in group settings, in our worship communities, and in our Skylark centers.  We tend to look for more intense, repeated opportunities.
  • Mind: specifically calls for cognitive exercise and challenges.  The research generally suggests working on something challenging.  A simple puzzle or crossword puzzle probably won’t cut it.  Though a hard, challenging crossword might. We’ve also concluded that there is evidence that learning or experiencing something new does work well.  The evidence increasingly points to the importance of good sleep.
  • Exercise: Move, Move, Move.  Pretty basic.  Though many of us are not big fans of exercise.  Again, the evidence suggest that we want to challenge ourselves.  A little five-minute stroll isn’t likely to be enough.  Walking quickly and working up some sweat is more effective.
  • Fuel:  What we eat significantly affects our brain health.  At Skylark, we have many dietary requests ranging from low sodium to low potassium to renal diets.  It’s important to keeping our Seniors healthy.
  • Spirit: We’re big believers that what we do should bring joy to our lives.  Are we creating meaning for ourselves, our loved ones, and our community?  Our mission at Skylark is to inspire freedom, hope, and joy in our Seniors and those who love them.  I can’t say that I’ve seen a lot about our spirits in research beyond choose what you like so you’ll stick with it.  But, not looking to something that brings meaning, moves our spirits, creates joy seems downright depressing.

Reduce the Risk of Dementia 

We’re also keenly aware that many family members consider their loved ones with dementia and wonder: “Am I next?”  Skylark family caregivers tend to be in their 40s and 50s taking care of their parents or a spouse caring for a spouse.

We live in a hopeful age for considering Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.  Scanning through the web, some will talk about preventing dementia.  Others will talk about reducing the risk of dementia or perhaps delaying the onset or the progression of dementia.

Our friends in the medical field have made significant advances in understanding how to do just this.  The suggestions look remarkably similar to what it takes to keep our hearts healthy: control blood pressure, exercise, eat a healthy diet, and get good sleep.  Some of this requires medical intervention and medicine to keep us healthy and manage chronic conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes. Take a look at this article for some additional information: What can you do to avoid Alzheimer’s disease? – Harvard Health

Much of what is known suggests what we do makes a significant difference.

Thriving Minds

What we’ve learned for our members applies to those who care for them.  For those of us healthy enough to read this, we can have hope that our choices and lifestyles can significantly reduce the risk developing dementia.

We’re committed to sharing what we’ve learned about reducing the risk of developing dementia in a series entitled “Make Your BrainBloom!” We’ll use our framework Engage, Mind, Move, Fuel, and Exercise to organize what we’ve found (we’ll even share if something doesn’t quite fit).

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At Skylark Senior Care, we approach caregiving a different way. We believe in creating programs that support the whole person.

Skylark Senior Care® and the Skylark Senior Care® logo is a registered trademark.

Service Locations

Cobb
Phone : (404) 410-1510
Johns Creek
Phone : (404) 410-1510
Home Care
Phone : (404) 410-1510