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Patti LaFleur, M. ED, CDP

Dementia Caregiver Advocate
Patti is a former care partner to both her Mother and Father and a current advocate for dementia caregivers. Patti is a caregiving expert specifically in the area of supporting a person living with dementia.

Education

University of Washington, MA Instructional Leadership | Central Washington University, BEd, Elementary Education and Teaching | Certified Dementia Practitioner, National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners – NCCDP

Professional

Care Fellow, Caring Across Generations | Caregiving Champion, Caregiving.com | Volunteer, Dementia Friends Washington | Volunteer, Opening Minds Through Art, Lutheran Community Services NW | Community Educator, Alzheimer’s Association | Young Professional Board, Lorenzo’s House

Personal

Former Care Partner to Both Parents

Experience

Patti is a former care partner to both her Mother and Father and a current advocate for dementia caregivers. Patti is a caregiving expert specifically in the area of supporting a person living with dementia.

Patti LaFleur is a former care partner for both her mother and father. Her father had vascular dementia, and her mother had type 1 Diabetes in addition to mixed dementia. Patti documented her caregiving journey with her mom while she was caring for her, and she has helped countless other young caregivers find joy in their caregiving journey.

Mixed dementia:Patti’s mother lived with mixed dementia. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, mixed dementia is “a condition in which brain changes of more than one cause of dementia occur simultaneously.”

Patti’s Personal Caregiving Journey

During Patti’s personal caregiving journey as a care partner for both of her parents, she found the following resources particularly helpful.

  • Teepa Snow– Teepa is a well-known dementia care education specialist with over 40 years of experience who is known for her creative and practical approaches to providing care for people living with dementia.
  • Dementia Darling– Dementia Darling is a dementia caregiver support community started by a Certified Dementia Practitioner.
  • Alzheimer’s Association– The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer’s care, support, and research.
  • Local Area Agency on Aging– Also known as AAA’s, Area Agencies on Aging are specific to particular geographic locations throughout the US. The function of AAA’s is to coordinate and offer services to help older adults remain safely at home.

Patti also created an online course containing lessons based on person-centered care for people living with dementia and support for caregivers.

The hardest part of caregiving was knowing that no matter what I did, my Mom’s disease would continue to progress. Isolation was also a difficult part of my caregiving experience. I encourage other caregivers who are caring for a loved one to find your support system! It is important to find the people in your life who can support you when it gets hard. That could be friends, family, support groups, and online resources.

PATTI LAFLEUR, DEMENTIA CAREGIVER ADVOCATE

Patti LaFleur and her mom getting ready to bake.
Photo courtesy of Patti LaFleur