INDIANAPOLIS, April 26, 2016 – Celebrating Mother’s Day, like other holidays, can be challenging when a mother in the family is living with Alzheimer’s. On these kinds of special occasions, a person with Alzheimer’s may feel a sense of loss because of the changes being experienced as a result of the disease. At the same time, caregivers and other family members may struggle with figuring out how to celebrate Mother’s Day with someone with memory impairment.
Despite having a mom with Alzheimer’s in the family, Mother’s Day can be a meaningful and enjoyable occasion. Planning will take more thought and each family’s unique circumstances will need to be taken into consideration. The following tips from the Alzheimer’s Association can help:
- Take a person-centered approach. Focus on what is enjoyable for the person with Alzheimer’s, such as looking at family pictures or serving/ordering in the person’s favorite food. Consider what would be more meaningful to the person. If they get overwhelmed in large groups, a small quiet gathering may be preferable.
- Don’t overdo it. Depending on the person’s stamina, plan time for breaks so the person can rest in a quiet area away from noise and crowds.
- Keep it simple. Consider a celebration over a lunch or brunch. Ask family/friends to bring dishes for a potluck meal or have food delivered by a local restaurant or grocery store.
- Know what to expect. Mother’s Day may bring together family members who haven’t seen each other in a while. Help those attending understand know what to expect in advance and how to best respond.
- Educate yourself and find support. Learn more about the stages and symptoms of Alzheimer’s in the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Caregiver Center at alz.org/care. There you can also find tips on planning holidays for families living with Alzheimer’s, join the ALZConnected online community, and find more information about your local Alzheimer’s Association chapter services and programs.
Today it is estimated that 5.4 million Americans, including 110,000 Hoosiers, have Alzheimer’s disease, and nearly 16 million family members and friends, of which 334,000 are Indiana residents, are caregivers providing financial, physical and emotional support.
“Caregivers face special challenges, but they are not alone on this journey,” said Linda Altmeyer, Alzheimer’s Association Greater Indiana Chapter Director of Programs. “The Alzheimer’s Association is here to help, and we offer free care and support to families facing Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia, including one-on-one care planning and access to information and assistance through our 24/7 Helpline, 800.272.3900, and website, alz.org/indiana.”
About the Alzheimer’s Association
The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer’s care, support and research. It is the largest nonprofit funder of Alzheimer’s research. The Association’s mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Its vision is a world without Alzheimer’s. Visit alz.org/indiana or call 800-272-3900.