Conference teaches tips on caring for Alzheimer’s patients

JACKSON, Tenn. — A conference 10 years running is helping those who care for Alzheimer’s patients.

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10 years ago Jan Boud and Regina Smith started the Alzheimer’s Caregivers Conference after they both lost parents to the disease.

“As we started talking we realized there are people all over our community who are dealing with this issue,” co-founder Jan Boud said. “And they wanted help. They wanted an education, they wanted to learn.”

Wednesday, family members and professional caregivers came to learn tips on how to communicate with and take care of their loved ones and patients, but they weren’t just sitting and listening.

One thing that’s unique about the conference is the stage is set up like a home. A bedroom, a kitchen a living room.

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They pulled people from the audience and gave tips on how to make sure people with Alzheimer’s and dementia stay safe no matter what room of the house they’re in.

West Tennessee Healthcare also has an Alzheimer’s resource center, where every day they’re able to help those dealing with and those taking care of someone with Alzheimer’s disease.

“We never had that when I needed it. So I want to be able to help those families just get through this journey of Alzheimer’s disease,” co-founder Regina Smith said.

300 people attended the first day of the conference.

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“Our prayer today is they will be able to come away from the day to day routine of caring for their loved one. To get renewed and refreshed in body, mind and spirit. And that they’ll learn new skills that they can put into practice,” Boud said.

They also announced at the conference Jackson is receiving one of four grants to become a Tennessee Dementia Friendly Community.

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