Award-winning music star Patty
Loveless is known as one of the world's
greatest country singers. The
Kentucky-born singer grew up in a small
town and climbed her way to the top,
recording numerous hit albums and
singles. She has had more than forty
singles on the Billboard Hot Country
Songs charts, including five Number
Patty is also one the celebrities
bringing attention to the challenges of
living with COPD, Chronic Obstructive
Pulmonary Disease, that took the life of
her sister at only 48. Editor-in-chief
Gary Barg spoke with Patty about the
challenges of caregiving, COPD and her
focus on early detection and treatment
of the disease.
Gary Barg: I know that you’ve
been personally affected by COPD—your
sister, your dad, your friends.
What message would you want to tell our
readers about COPD awareness?
Patty Loveless: I think more than
anything that I just would like to tell
them that it’s the fourth leading cause
of death in this country right now and
there are possibly 24 million people
walking around with it and they don’t
even know they might have some form of
COPD stands for chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease and a lot of people
that I’ve been meeting have been coming
up and talking to me about the symptoms,
like shortness of breath. I’m trying to
encourage them to seek treatment if they
are at risk and I’m really trying to get
them to take the five question screener
and not to be afraid. It’s a
relief when you know what you’ve got to
It's In The Genes
By Jennifer Bradley, Staff Writer
diagnosis of any disease is scary. When a loved one finds out
it’s hereditary, the unknown becomes even more concerning.
Neuropathy is a disease of one or more nerves that leads to
weakness and wasting of muscles. Most often, this affects
muscles below the knees and in hands. Hereditary neuropathy is
passed from parents to children. For some types, the genetic
defect is definable and can be addressed early on...continued
Functional Flexibility Activities for
By Lori Peppi Michiel
For aging adults going from
inactivity to activity, flexibility training may offer a
good start towards a healthy lifestyle. This type of
training may lack the high profile of cardiovascular
exercise and strength training, but it can improve range
of motion, decrease pain and soreness after exercise,
improve posture, and decrease muscle tension. More
importantly, stretching can make the difference in
comfort when performing tasks such as putting a shirt or
blouse on in the morning or reaching for a cup of tea or
Top Ten Ways To Care For Yourself
Keep a diary. Start today.
Describe your fears as well as your hopes, the
reality of what each day is like, Don’t be afraid to
write about the losses, big or small.
Stick with your diary. Let
yourself record the little victories, go back and
review the earlier months and years. Notice the
personal, physical, emotional goals and successes
you and your loved one have achieved...continued
I get the FCG newsletter and really
enjoy it. Thanks for making available such an
outstanding resource for caregivers. Momma is almost
90 and has Alzheimer’s. She'd brush her teeth and
rinse out with mouthwash for a while. Then she'd allow
us to do it. Now, she just bites down on the
toothbrush and swallows the toothpaste and mouthwash.
We give her lots of liquids and fruit like apples and pears
to crunch down on. She still is eating well for the
time being. However, food is lodged in her teeth.
She needs a good cleaning. She sometimes holds
water/liquid in her mouth. I believe she's trying to
swish the liquid in her mouth to clean it. I know it
must be very uncomfortable for her.
I called her
long-time dentist to find out if there was a special
procedure for treating such patients. He has no clue.
Her doctor didn't have a solution either; just trying to
clean her teeth while she's medicated. What does one
do? Can she be sedated and then have her teeth
cleaned? Is there is a specialty dentist out there
that deals with this problem? I'm sure it must be
pretty common. I can't believe we're the only ones
going through this.
Any help would be most
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