On Tuesday evening, Journey Senior Living hosted author, Elaine Pereira, a licensed Occupational Therapist, to discuss her book and answer questions regarding dementia and Alzheimer's. Journey Senior Living is a senior care facility located in Valparaiso which offers assisted living and memory care for residents.
As community members entered the building they anticipated the opportunity to learn, but were also introduced to a beautiful new facility which will welcome its first residents on Thursday. Pereira discussed her book, I Will Never Forget, and provided an informational, enjoyable presentation.
With new research, people are continuously learning more and more about Alzheimer’s. Families are understanding that it is not a character trait, but a progressive disease that damages the memory. Many people from the audience learned a key lesson, that they are not alone. Pereira discussed how important it is for family members to not lose that connection with a loved one.
“One of the pitfalls that families have with their loved ones having Alzheimer’s is the inability to maintain language and communication,” Pereira explained. “I offer some ways around that and help families understand why language falls apart so quickly. I want everyone to realize that they are not alone on this journey, but also more than likely their loved one is still in there and it is on us to find ways to connect.”
The Executive Director of Journey Senior Living, Melissa Green, shared her story and why she believed that Pereira’s presentation was very helpful to everyone.
“I think a lot of people are hit in their personal lives with dementia or Alzheimer’s. I have a history of it in my family, my grandma had Alzheimer's,” Green said. “When it comes to caregivers I think there is a lot of guilt and they don’t know how to cope or deal with it. I think having someone like Elaine speak about her story is really helpful because a lot of people still don’t understand how to deal with it in their personal lives.”
Journey Senior Living also helps families who have loved ones with the disease. The senior care facility provides excellent staff and care to those in need of service. The Director of Nursing at the Journey Senior Living, Sophia Politakis, explained why this center provides the best quality of assisted living.
“I always look at every individual in the facility as if they were my own family member,” Politakis described. “I will do what I need to do to make sure that their care is the best that we can provide.”
With Pereira's presentation and the help from Journey Senior Living, people do not have to be afraid anymore. Community members effected by Alzheimer’s should not feel alone, as Pereira described. As a community we will always remain strong when we learn together and support one another.