There are approximately 15 million Alzheimer's caregivers in the U.S. taking care of neighbors, friends, family and other loved ones. Caring for those with Alzheimer's can be a lot of hard work and at times it may be hard for caregivers to admit they need a little extra help. However, it's important for caregivers to build a strong support network so they can provide the highest quality care for those they love. At the end of the day, it's impossible to know everything about this disease, especially since there is still so much research that needs to be done to identify the exact causes. Here are five resources for Alzheimer's caregivers:
"Edgewood offers 24 hour on-site staff and registered nurses"
1. Local assisted living retirement communities
A memory care assisted living community allows Alzheimer's residents to enjoy a lifestyle of independence while also receiving necessary care. For example, Edgewood offers 24 hour on-site staff and registered nurses to ensure that there is always someone on hand to care for your loved one. Moreover, these communities have numerous amenities and scheduled activities so that your loved one can remain active and independent.
2. The Alzheimer's Association 24/7 helpline
It's hard to know how to handle every situation when providing care for your loved one with Alzheimer's. Luckily, the Alzheimer's Association has a 24/7 helpline with staff prepared to answer any of your inquiries. Helpline staff is meant to serve caregivers, those with memory loss, health care professionals and the public at large. Therefore, the helpline is a reliable resource for learning more about a wide range of Alzheimer's-related topics such as general brain health, treatment options, living arrangements and more.
3. The National Institutes of Health
The NIH has an extensive list of resources including books, online journals, newsletters, DVDs and fact sheets for those looking to learn more about Alzheimer's disease and being a caregiver. Moreover, the NIH has research centers constantly working to improve prevention and treatment options for those suffering from Alzheimer's. Furthermore, the NIH provides grants and funding for general brain and dementia research.
4. The Caregiver Action Network
The Caregiver Action Network – formerly the National Family Caregivers Association – is a leading organization and resource for the estimated 65 million Americans caring for a loved one. Of course, one of the most prevalent conditions is Alzheimer's, and CAN has many caregiver resources including newsletters and a peer support network.
5. Your local Alzheimer's Association chapter
Your local chapter of the Alzheimer's Association is likely doing more work than you realize. These chapters run charity events such as 5Ks and golf outings, and build community support networks for caregivers and others affected by the disease. You can also connect over social media channels such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. With the support of an assisted living community and your local Alzheimer's Association chapter, you'll be able to build a strong network of people that can not only help you provide care for your loved one, but also support you as a caregiver.