For the more than 15 million Americans caring for the 5.4 million living with Alzheimer’s or some other form of dementia, the road ahead is one many would rather not take. Though there were exciting breakthroughs at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference held in Canada last week (read about them here), we are still without a cure for the cluster of diseases and disorders that destroy memories and put an incredible strain on individuals, families, workplaces and communities.
When a loved one is diagnosed, or if you are faced with a diagnosis yourself, you have probably considered the future in a completely different light. And while the economy has dashed many Americans’ retirement hopes and plans, there is nothing like a dementia diagnosis to darken the view of what comes next.
Here’s the good news: when the time comes to make a care decision, there are many facilities and services available to meet the unique needs of those with Alzheimer’s/dementia. The majority of today’s Alzheimer’s care communities are designed to be as home-like as possible, which helps family and friends feel more comfortable when visiting, and allows those who transition into care to hopefully feel less stigmatized, even as they must become dependent on others.
For support and insights on how to navigate the next steps, consider the guidelines in Evaluating the Caregiving State of Affairs, or peruse our extensive Alzheimer’s Resource Guide. You can also search for Alzheimer’s care right here on the site.