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Talking to Children about Alzheimer’s Disease

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Alzheimer’s Disease can take a toll on the whole family, not just the person with the diagnosis. Seeing someone you love go through the physical and emotional changes related to the disease is difficult to witness. This can be especially difficult for young children who may have fears about the changes they see happening to someone they love.

If you are a parent and provide Fort Myers home care for an aging parent or loved one with Alzheimer’s, it’s important to begin a conversation with your children about the condition and what your parent or loved one will be going through. Doing so can help alleviate fears, while also helping them to understand what to expect.

You can start talking to your children about the disease as soon as you feel it is appropriate and should keep in mind the following tips:

  • Make sure to talk about the disease in age appropriate terms

    . For younger children, you can simply state that your loved one is sick and will have trouble remembering things and will sometimes be confused.

  • Gauge how much information you provide on their emotional response

    . Depending on your child’s level of understanding, you can also explain to them what changes they will see as the disease progresses. For teens, you can offer more information including letting them know what the prognosis is and what treatments are being used.

  • Check-in with their feelings regularly

    . Also, make sure to check in with your children periodically to find out how they are feeling. Let your children know that they can come talk to you about whatever they are feeling at any time.

Keep in mind, though, that children and teens will not always communicate what they are feeling the way an adult will, so if you see any signs that indicate that they may be having a difficult time coping, make sure to reach out to them. Sometimes, simply knowing that you are there to listen can encourage them to share their true feelings.

Talking to your children about your loved one’s Alzheimer’s can be a difficult conversation to have, but is one that is necessary to ensuring their comfort at home. If you feel you need help managing your role as a caregiver and parent, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Fort Myers today. We are a trusted home care agency that offers tailored Alzheimer’s care in Fort Myers from highly trained and compassionate caregivers.

Learn more today by calling us at 239-449-4701 and schedule a complimentary, no-obligation consultation. We’re here to help 24/7.