Your parent, spouse, or a loved one has started forgetting the short term and is increasingly confused. Details escape them, dancing just out of reach, and they forget where they’ve placed the keys or that they’ve already told you a particular story twice today. Or their confusion is more severe, and they have entirely lost their sense of what is happening around them. Regardless of the severity, caring for your parent with Alzheimer’s Disease is a daily process and one that requires patience and understanding.

Alzheimer’s affects approximately 5.3 million Americans — making it the most common form of dementia — and a 40% increase in diagnoses is predicted in the next decade. While there is no cure, the disease can be managed through both medical intervention and day-to-day adjustments. Here are some tips for those caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s, be it a parent or other loved one.

Alzheimers_caregivers_blog.jpegEducate yourself and watch for early symptoms. If you suspect your loved one is in the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s, it is helpful to know what to look for. Early symptoms can include confusion about place and time, as well as short-term memory loss. They may struggle to remember...

With the way the media portrays mental hospitals, these don’t seem like places you want to take your child. It was not a place I ever wanted to take my child, yet I have. More than once. As you can imagine, it was not an easy decision. While more people are speaking out about mental illness, most people are still unaware of why a child would need inpatient psychiatric care. I can say now that while it was a scary and overwhelming experience, I am grateful to the doctors, nurses, and staff that have taken care of my child and provided him the care that he so desperately needed.

IMG_2118.JPGBryce was only in first grade; he was seven years old. He was struggling in all areas of life—home, school, and social skills. He had already been diagnosed with a mood disorder and ADHD, and was taking medications for these mental health conditions. But even with support, Bryce was engaging in self-injurious behaviors including head-banging and running in the street, wanting to be hit by cars. He was struggling at school—refusing to work and having angry, violent outbursts resulting in restraints. I got frequent calls from school telling me that I had to come pick him up because he was uncontrollable. 


Last month, the Maryland Chapter of the International Association of Healthcare Security & Safety (IAHSS) partnered with Niagara University’s First Responder Disability Awareness Training to offer a free training to educate law enforcement and security officers on and sensitize them to proper responses to individuals with disabilities.

IMG_6667.JPGThis session was important in training security officials to recognize and understand behaviors that they might otherwise miscomprehend, and teach them how to best communicate with individuals with various disabilities. This kind of education better equips officers to handle situations and achieve positive outcomes.

We sat down with Jeff Hagen, security manager at Sheppard Pratt Health System, to learn about why this training is so important.

Tell us a little bit about the recent training held here at the Conference Center on Sheppard Pratt’s Towson campus.

IAHSS’s mission is to provide continuous education, and we knew this topic was both needed and timely. With over 80 participants in this training session, we had a terrific response. Attendees came from local, state, and federal law enforcement and security agencies, including healthcare,...

We all have mental health. And that doesn’t just mean health conditions; your mental health is about your emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It influences the way you think, feel, and act, and those in turn influence your mental health.

selfcare_1.jpegPeople with good mental health tend to feel well emotionally and think clearly. When you are feeling well mentally, you are better equipped to handle stressful events and maintain positive relationships. When you are not feeling your best, it can be challenging to get motivated and enjoy life to the fullest. Since mental health and physical health are connected, people with poor mental health often feel sluggish and lethargic. And alternatively, when you stay well physically, it helps keep your mind healthy.

Ultimately, taking care of both your mind and body can have a positive impact on your mental health. One way to improve your mental health is to engage in self-care by taking time each day to look after yourself. Just like vitamins and medications can help boost your immune system and heal your body, self-care can boost your mood, lower your stress levels, and improve how you feel about yourself. And when you feel good about...

Life can seem overwhelming. Between school, sports, relationships, and family drama, it sometimes feels like there’s no one to talk to and nowhere to turn for help. But when life feels that low, that’s exactly when you need to keep these 13 resources in your back pocket, because there is always someplace to turn and someone who can help you navigate your way through the darkness.

13_places_to_turn_for_help_copy.jpegWe’ve put together a list of 13 places to turn for help if you ever feel like you’re in over your head.

  1. If it’s an emergency, call 911. If you are feeling out of control and like you may hurt yourself or someone else, call 911. They can get you the immediate help you need to help you through the crisis.
  2. Go to your local emergency room. If you are scared to call 911, go to your local hospital. A mental health crisis is as serious as any physical health crisis, and doctors will treat you when you arrive. Make sure to request referrals to a mental hospital or outpatient treatment program to help you in your recovery.
  3. Schedule an urgent mental health assessment. Just like emergency rooms, urgent mental health assessments provide psychiatric emergency services for those in crisis. If you’re in...

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