Caregiver Tactics – Talking About Health

Different approaches for discussing Alzheimer’s disease with your loved one.

Claudia, Caregiver for Mother, 12 Years, Texas:
She would ask me from time to time, she’d say, “What’s wrong with me?  I feel like I’m losing my mind.  What’s wrong with me?”

It is estimated 5.4 million people in the United States are living with Alzheimer’s disease.

Judith, Caregiver for Mother, 4 Years, Texas:
In my case, I told my mother it was Alzheimer’s but I told her, “It’s not your fault.  It’s nothing you did, and it’s just something of a disease of the brain, and it’s not caused by anything that anyone did to you, and it’s gonna cause you to forget more and more.”

Claudia, Caregiver for Mother, 12 Years, Texas:
I think it’s such a sensitive issue for the person themselves.  They don’t want to believe that they have it.  They don’t want to think about the long-term, about what’s going to happen to them.

Laura, Caregiver for Mother, 8 Years, California:
We’re very, very careful to not use that word around her, it really upsets her so, we would make up a number of different things: “It’s your back, it’s your hip.”  We don’t try to tell her that she’s losing her memory or she’s losing her function that way and my entire goal for the last 15 years has just been to keep her happy.

Alzheimer is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States.

Vivian, Caregiver for Father, 4 Years, Pennsylvania:
…in my mother’s mind she keeps saying, “I hope he doesn’t get any worse.  I hope he doesn’t get any worse.”  And we’re like, “Mom, this is … today, May 6th, this is as good as he’s going to get.  He’s not going to get any better.”

Joanne, Caregiver for Husband, 5 Years, California:
He always said don’t react, redirect and I asked him about talking to Jack that he has Alzheimer’s and he said no, well don’t even bring it up because he’s going to forget five minutes from now.

Claudia, Caregiver for Mother, 12 Years, Texas:
The “A” word for that generation of people was frightening.  They all think about it.  They don’t want it.  They’re scared of it.

Content sponsored by Forest Laboratories, Inc.