Alzheimer’s Association Dementia Care conference announced

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LIVERPOOL — Dementia expert Teepa Snow, whose innovative approach to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia care has been recognized internationally, will be the featured speaker at the Alzheimer’s Association Dementia Care 2019 caregiver conference on May 22 at the Holiday Inn-Syracuse/Liverpool/Exit 37, 441 Electronics Parkway.

The eighth annual conference, presented by McHarrie Pointe Assisted Living, is intended for family and professional caregivers of individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia.

Admission is $65 through April 30 and increases to $80 on May 1. Register for the event at alz.org/cny or by calling 315-472-4201.

Snow, an occupational therapist and educator with more than four decades in geriatric care, developed The GEMS® brain change model focusing on the person living with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia’s abilities within a moment to create a supportive care environment.

“Just as gemstones need different settings and care to show their best characteristics, so do people,” Snow said.  “Rather than focusing on a person’s loss when there is brain change, seeing individuals as precious, unique, and capable encourages a care partnership and is the core of this model.”

The North Carolina-based Snow will present two topics to attendees:

• Using a Positive Approach to Care is intended to help caregivers manage their own behaviors when interacting with the person in their care. Repeating questions and stories, or using inappropriate language often accompanies Alzheimer’s disease and caregivers may struggle or become easily frustrated during those situations.

Snow’s presentation emphasizes how to approach people living with dementia safely and consistently, provide verbal support and responses to reduce distress, and create meaningful connections.

• Coping with Challenging Behaviors in Dementia Care is designed to help caregivers better understand commonly occurring behaviors caused by the brain changes related to dementia, as well as looking beyond the disease for other possible factors that may cause or contribute to the behavior.

Snow’s presentation will look at the factors that trigger dementia behaviors — personality traits and life experiences and preferences, environmental conditions and cues, and other medical, sensory, or psychological conditions — with the goal of reducing the intensity and frequency of dementia-related behaviors.

The conference registration fee includes access to all sessions and interactive expo, a conference manual, continental breakfast and lunch. 

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, fatal disease and the sixth-leading cause of death in America. There are 5.8 million people nationwide, including 400,000 in New York, living with Alzheimer’s disease.

More than 1 million New Yorkers provide unpaid, informal Alzheimer’s care. According to the 2019 Alzheimer’s Association Alzheimer’s Disease Facts & Figures, Alzheimer’s disease care in the U.S. will cost $290 billion.

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