Explaining Alzheimer’s to Your Children or Teens

Alzheimer’s disease affects millions of families; awareness of Alzheimer’s is quite high in America though it still may be a difficult conversation to have with younger children and adolescents. There may be a time when a grandparent experiences trouble remembering their grandkid’s name or their behavior seems strange to the child and it will come time for an explanation. Here are some ways to help your children understand and cope:

  • Educate your child about the disease with facts
  • Allow them to ask questions, encourage honesty and openness
  • Reassure your child that their emotions are normal
  • Foster a supporting environment and create space for the child to connect with their loved one
  • Do activities together as a family such as play a game, go for a walk outdoors, create arts and crafts, or even help your loved one with household chores

You can read more about Alzheimer’s disease and find resources for kids and teens here: http://www.alz.org/living_with_alzheimers_talking_to_kids_and_teens.asp