To celebrate Read a Book Month, Alex Raftakis read and reviewed the book, The 36-Hour Day, by Nancy Mace and Peter Rabins. Alex is the lead front desk concierge at Arbor Terrace Naperville, Mirabelle's sister community in the Chicago area. Her strong relationship with her grandparents and desire to enter a career that helped others influenced her towards the senior care industry. Her review, below, details her thoughts and experience reading the 6th edition of this helpful guide.
The 36-Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for People Who Have Alzheimer’s Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss, by Nancy Mace and Peter Rabins, is the archetypal how-to manual on how to manage and solve problems caused by dementia. What do you do when your spouse begins leaving the stove on? How do you step in when your father insists he can take care of your mother all by himself when that may no longer be the case? What’s your plan when your grandmother becomes increasingly paranoid of everyone around her? This book informs and eases family members and caregivers through the trials they’ll face after someone they love is diagnosed with dementia.
Mace and Rabins describe in detail all of the changed behaviors a person may show, and give suggestions for plans of action toward dealing with these changes to decrease stress in both the caregiver’s life and the person who has dementia. The authors teach the reader financial literacy applied to eldercare. Options such as adult daycare, at-home caregivers, and assisted living are also thoroughly analyzed, empowering the reader to make informed choices for their spouses and parents. While packed with information, The 36-Hour Day is far from a dry read. Mace and Rabins never forget the complex emotions that run through the heads of those who’ve had dementia make an appearance in their lives.
As a worker in an assisted living facility, this book touched on many aspects of senior care I was already familiar with, such as redirection techniques and the inner runnings of assisted living care. Mace and Rabins deeply enriched my understanding of the biological components of memory loss which taught me the science of why residents with dementia act the way they do. Education on this topic has reiterated the importance of patience and empathy with those afflicted, a crucial skill needed for those who work in this field. Any caregiver or prospective health care worker would immensely benefit from this work for its meticulous study of the disease and how people can continue to thrive through it.