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The Supreme Court throws out a Trump-era ban on gun bump stocks; a look at how social media algorithms and Shakespearian villains have in common; and states receive federal funding to clean up legacy mine pollution.

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The Supreme Court for now protects access to abortion drug mifepristone, while Senate Republicans block a bill protecting access to in-vitro fertilization. Wisconsin's Supreme Court bans mobile voting sites, and colleges deal with funding cuts as legislatures target diversity programs.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

Summer safety tips for CT people with dementia, Alzheimer’s

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Monday, May 27, 2024   

This Memorial Day, Connecticut health experts are guiding caregivers on how to keep people with Alzheimer's safe.

People with the various forms of dementia cannot always voice their needs, so caregivers have to be mindful.

Kristen Cusato, director of communications for the Connecticut chapter of the Alzheimer's Association, noted planning ahead reduces injury risk and helps a person with dementia feel more relaxed. She said Memorial Day celebrations can sometimes overwhelm someone with Alzheimer's or dementia.

"Maybe if you normally have a giant picnic with a ton of people, maybe you just have a smaller picnic with yourself, and a couple of family members and the person with dementia," Cusato suggested. "Go sit on the beach with a nice umbrella and nice cool towels for the neck."

She added people with dementia might not recognize if they are getting sunburned, so keeping them covered is essential. One thing to avoid is the overstimulation watching fireworks in person could create. Cusato recommended watching at home could be a better and less frightening option. She added shutting the shades in a cool room, and turning on music or a TV show can make it an enjoyable Memorial Day for all.

Cusato pointed out there are some things people do not always consider when caring for someone with Alzheimer's or dementia. One in particular is how heat can agitate someone with the illnesses. Rather than argue with them, she advised good communication skills -- and what she described as "going into their reality" -- makes a difference.

"Someone said, 'Oh boy, I'm not feeling well, I've got to go home, I've got to go home.' 'OK, tell us what home means to you. What is it like at the home? Oh, you grew up on So-and-So Avenue. Tell us about that,'" Cusato outlined. "Don't say the words, 'Remember this, remember that.'"

Pulling out a photo album can sometimes reorient the person who is feeling threatened. She added it is important to stay with your loved one at gatherings and offer a quiet place away from crowds. About 70% of Alzheimer's patients wander. Cusato also suggested registering them with "Bring Me Back Home," a program to help law enforcement locate missing or wandering people.


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