The Alliance of Business Professionals, in collaboration with Staying Put and the New Canaan Library, will present a panel discussion "Dementia: A Primer for Families and Caregivers" at the New Canaan Library on May 6 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Panelists include Dr. Stephen Jones, gerontologist and Director of Greenwich Hospital's Center for Healthy Aging; Tania Paparazzo, Southwest Regional Director, Alzheimer's Association, CT Chapter, Norwalk; Kathleen Toombs, Family Therapist, New Canaan; and Michelle Lee Beltrano, Attorney, Areas of Practice: Health, Elder Law and Probate, Greenwich. Both Toombs and Beltrano are members of the New Canaan-based Alliance of Business Professionals.

Using a power point presentation, Jones will discuss "What is Dementia," describing the types of dementia, signs and related behaviors of the disease, and current research and medications. He is also an Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at the Yale University School of Medicine, a member of the Alzheimer's Association Medical and Scientific Advisory Board and President of the Connecticut Geriatrics Society.

Paparazzo will describe ways to navigate dementia's communication barriers, and services offered by the Alzheimer's Association for both those with Alzheimer's disease and their families/caregivers, including ongoing support groups for caregivers.

Toombs will discuss "The Impact of Dementia on the Entire Family" from the perspective of a caregiver, reaching out and finding resilience when shame or guilt impede your progress.

Beltrano's topic is "Advocating Today for Your Tomorrow," which includes the legal issues of "Planning for the Unexpected" and the "Top Five Things to Know to Keep You in the Driver's Seat."

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