What Do I Do When the Doctor Says it’s Alzheimer’s?
I refer to Alzheimer’s as being like a light switch that goes on and off in the brain. From the moment you know the diagnosis – that is the time to start planning. You never know when the switch will flip. The time to take control is immediate because you don’t want to make decisions in crisis mode. It is much easier to plan when you have the opportunity to gather information rather than having a few options during a time of crisis.
Planning is Key
Talk to your loved one and all the family members that want to be involved with planning. It is never too early to start planning. Some areas to think about include financial planning, health care planning, legal planning, directives, and safety in the house. Refer to the Checklist to Organize Family, Legal and Care Matters which I have created to help you start the conversation and gather the documents you will need. It is important to note that there are specialized Elder Law attorneys, insurance and financial planners that can give you expert and current information and will help in your planning to make sure you have things in proper order.
Be a Successful Caregiver
Alzheimer’s is a tricky disease. It can give you the sense that all is okay and then the light switch flips and you are switching to crisis mode. There will be many light switch moments as you work through the Alzheimer’s diagnosis. There are many people available to help you through each of the various situations. In my book, Simply Caring: Putting the Alzheimer’s Puzzle Together, I have gathered many resources for you to use. Reach out to the local chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. Reach out to me. Caregiving is stressful and you don’t have to go it alone. I want you to have the tools, training, education and information to be a successful caregiver. I am here to help you, your loved one, and your family.
Highlights from Author and Almost Home CEO Jamie Glavich, Simply Caring: Putting the Alzheimer’s Puzzle Together. View more at SimplyCaringBook.com.