How to Find Support Services for Alzheimer's Patients
Local services allow patients to stay in their homes as long as possible
Most people want to stay in their communities and live in their homes as long as possible. Communities and states offer different services. This article offers ideas to get you started finding support in your area.
Finding Local Resources
Federal and State Programs (Other Than Medicaid) Many communities have programs to assist people with Alzheimer's disease in a number of different ways. One of the best ways to determine what government assistance is available is to contact your local Area Agency on Aging.
The local Area Agency on Aging may be able to connect you with such services as Meals on Wheels, transportation services to help get to doctors' appointments, or support groups for people with Alzheimer's and their caregivers, and other home care programs. These resources are particularly important if you choose to remain in your home.
- The Eldercare Locator can assist you in finding find help on a variety of subjects and can be filtered by topic area or geographic location.
- The Alzheimer's Association's 24/7 Helpline provides information and support to people with memory loss, caregivers, health care professionals, and the public at (800) 272-3900.
- The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs can help you find help near your home via their ZIP code locator or their Caregiver Support Line when caring for a veteran.
- The National Institutes of Health's Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral Center can be contacted five days a week via phone at (800) 438-4380 or via email at [email protected].
Counseling and Support
Getting information and counseling from reliable sources, like community organizations and support groups, can help both people with Alzheimer's and family members adjust to the challenges of the disease and reduce stress.
Counseling can help you understand how a person with Alzheimer's is changing, and help you figure out how to deal with those changes. By learning some tips from people who have experience with this disease, caregivers can be better prepared and less stressed as new challenges come up.
Support groups can connect you with people who are facing similar circumstances. Participating in groups or talking with someone on the phone can help reduce feelings of isolation.
Finding the right counseling for you and the person you are taking care of is an important piece of the care and treatment puzzle.
- The Alzheimer's Foundation's toll-free hotline provides information and counseling by licensed social workers and can refer you to community resources across the nation.
- The Alzheimer's Association's 24/7 Helpline is available to caregivers, families and individuals with Alzheimer's disease.
- WebMD's Alzheimer's Disease Health Center has an overview of types of support services and counseling options for people affected by the disease.
- The National Institutes of Health has a guide that offers practical advice for caregiving at all stages, including how to cope with changes in personality and communication, making your home safe, where to get help, medical decisions, and coping with the last stages of the disease.
- The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' Caregiver Support Line can provide assistance when caring for a veteran and connect you with a local Caregiver Support Coordinator.