Alzheimer’s Disease: Beginning the Conversation

How will you tell your loved one that he or she has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease? It’s not a simple task. You might think that it is not the right thing to do. That maybe ignorance is bliss. Also, since there aren’t a multitude of successful treatments, your loved one might feel a sense of hopelessness against the disease. Perhaps ignorance is bliss, then?

Actually, it’s can be just the opposite. If you do not tell your loved one about the diagnosis, they will wonder about lost memory and other problems that are related to the disease. He or she will not understand why these occurrences are happening, and that can lead to anger, frustration and confusion. So yes, it can be better to tell them so together you can start to plan treatment.

Remember: you owe honesty to your loved one. If they have concerns or suspicions that something more is wrong than just “forgetfulness,” give them context and clarity. Hopefully, the knowledge will make him or her feel less alone or concerned. Be sure to watch out for denial as well. Some individuals, when told, will not acknowledge the Alzheimer’s, but will acknowledge the memory loss they have experienced. It is also possible that they deny the diagnosis altogether. Make sure you pay attention to how your loved one responds after telling them. Depending on his or her reaction, you can set the tone for the rest of your dialogue together.

Everyone is different, and no one responds the same way. It is important to reassure your loved one that you will be there for him or her. Every step of the way. Alzheimer’s is a very frightening diagnosis, but the caring staff at CarDon can help. Visit cardon.us or call 844-4-CarDon to schedule an appointment or to find a community near you.

Resource: The Mayo Clinic