Debra Kleesattel, Ph.D., is the
Director of Operations for Humana Cares.
Humana Cares, a national division of
Humana, Inc., provides integrated
complex and chronic care management
programs for nearly 125,000 Humana
members across the country. Before
her present role, she was the Field Care
Manager Coach for Green Ribbon Health, a
Medicare Health Support pilot project.
Before joining Green Ribbon Health, she
was the Family Caregiver Resource
Specialist for the National Family
Caregiver Support Program at the Area
Agency on Aging in Rocky Mount, North
Editor-in-Chief Gary Barg spoke with Dr.
Kleesattel about the challenges of
self-identification for caregivers,
partnering with your loved one’s
healthcare team and the importance of
self-care for caregivers.
How would you suggest that a
caregiver could best partner
with their loved one’s care
Dr. Debra Kleesattel:
Caregiving happens on such a
continuum and what oftentimes
happens, because that caregiver
does not do what we call
self-identification, they do not
see themselves as caregivers.
They see themselves as doing
what everybody would do for
their loved one.
So recognizing early on in
the process of starting to
provide care for someone, I
think having that open and
honest dialogue and
communication about boy, I am
seeing some changes happening
here and maybe some assistance I
am providing, so let us talk
about that. ...continued
A new channel is available on caregiver.com.
To learn more about CMT - CHARCOT-MARIE-TOOTH,
The Value of Massage for Caregivers
By Kristine Dwyer,
Massage therapy isn’t just a luxury anymore and has actually become a vital part of health care practices worldwide. It is a holistic therapy that has shown positive effects on physical and mental health in addition to enhancing medical treatments. Having a massage does more than just relax the body and mind. There are measurable physiological and psychological changes that occur; especially when massage is used as a preventative and continuous therapy...continued
Those Inexplicable Instructions!
By Dr. Barry Tepperman
It happens to every caregiver.
You're at the doctor's with your loved one. You and your
loved one are both feeling well, and your loved one is
looking forward to a vacation away-with some strenuous
physical activity. Just to check, you tell the doctor
your plans: you're off, together, to the Great Smoky
Mountains for some hiking. A concerned frown comes over
the doctor's face, and your doctor says, "I really don't
think you should do that..."continued
RelationshipsBy Ryan Mackey
Tips for Doctors from Caregivers
Allow yourself to feel for the caregiver and be in
support of their role.
Be as up front as possible with any health conditions or
diagnoses of loved ones.
Do not be afraid to ask how the caregiver is doing, and
think of their needs even when tending to a loved one....continued
I am 36 and I take care of my husband who is 38 and has
Bipolar II disorder. He has had this for about 7
years. I love him very much and we have two teenage
daughters; we've been married 16 years. Right now I am
at my breaking point. I feel like *me* is completely gone.
All I can do is think about how to respond to him so that I
don’t set him off. He is staying on his meds for as far as I
can tell. The biggest thing I deal with is his inability to
communicate with anyone and mostly me. He absolutely refuses
or cannot try to talk to anyone about daily life. If I talk
to him once per day, that is a lot! And then it’s usually
like we just met and we talk about the weather.
want to break free of this; I want him to try to work on his
issues, but he won’t. I want to divorce him right now
because I just need to have a real relationship. But I love
him and I promised him for better or for worse. I want to
always be there for him, but I need things, too. I feel as
if I just don’t get to have feelings and preferences. I
think I need to find someone who can listen; someone who
cares about me. I need to find people like me, but
there are no support groups in my area that I can find.
Support Group Directory. Click
for information about any caregiver support groups in your area.
need your help.
Please add information about your local support
groups to our
Group Directory. Include the name of the group, where and when it
meets, city and state and support group leader contact information.
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