A recent study shows 91 percent of those surveyed agree that caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia should be a group effort among family members or close friends. However, one caregiver out of three is not engaging others in such tasks.
The Alzheimer’s Association is marking National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month and National Family Caregivers Month by honoring the more than 15 million family members and friends across the U.S. who are currently caring for a person living with Alzheimer’s.
The Alzheimer’s Association is encouraging people to lend a hand to caregivers by self-education, team building, respite, check-ins, errand-sharing and extra support during the holidays.
Making a standing appointment to give caregivers a break could make a big difference, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Two caregivers out of every three said that feeling isolated or alone was a significant challenge in providing care for someone with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia.
Oftentimes, open-ended offers of support can be dismissed, as the family may need time to assess needs — being specific and flexible in support of for caregivers is encouraged. Helping caregivers around the holidays is especially important and offering to host family celebrations, cooking, cleaning and gift shopping goes a long way in lending a helping hand.
Resources are available to learn more about the disease, its symptoms and the familiar challenges facing caregivers at www.alz.org. The Alzheimer’s Association offers a free, personalized Care Team Calendar to organize family and friends who want to help with caregiving at www.alz.org/care/alzheimers-dementia-care-calendar.asp.