It’s not just your loved one’s life that changes with an Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis. Your own life is also dramatically altered as you assume the role of caretaker. Several important issues should be addressed as soon as possible. You must also learn how to handle the day-to-day challenges of caring for a person with Alzheimer’s disease.

Most experts say that if the affected person asks you what’s wrong with them, you should be honest. Knowing that the problem is a disease, not “insanity,” is often a relief for the person affected. Telling someone who has not asked may be helpful, particularly if the person appears troubled about his or her condition. Generally, it’s best for the physician to explain the diagnosis. New information doesn’t always “stick,” however, so don’t be surprised if someone with Alzheimer’s disease continues to ask what’s wrong. In such cases, you can offer a reassuring but brief explanation.


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