A dementia diagnosis can be a challenging and emotional time for the person diagnosed as well as their family and friends. Unfortunately, this is a common scenario for many individuals. The World Health Organization states that 55 million people live with dementia worldwide, with 10 million new diagnoses yearly. According to the National Institute on Aging, those diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia often experience a loss of short-term memory, inability to make sound judgements, difficulty with communication, understanding and expressing thoughts. As dementia progresses, its symptoms often interfere with a person’s daily life and activities. After diagnosis, it is common to experience a wide range of emotions which vary from person to person.
What to Expect After a Diagnosis
For some adults, getting a diagnosis can be a long process. Noticing symptoms, scheduling appointments and tests can be an emotional journey. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, it’s likely you or your loved one may feel on or all of these emotions at some point.
Processing the diagnosis can take some time. However, as you or your loved one accept the diagnosis, you may find new ways to move forward while cultivating a fulfilling future. As you work through the diagnosis, it’s important to find new ways to support yourself or your loved one both emotionally and physically.
Sharing the Dementia Diagnosis with Family and Friends
It’s completely normal for your loved one to be hesitant about sharing their diagnosis with friends and family. However, as the disease progresses, it’s important to have a support system in place before they even need it. Telling family and friends will allow them to build their support system early and on and will enable them to face challenges more easily. Remember, they don’t have to tell everyone at once. They have the ability to choose who they want to tell and how to tell them. Here are a few tips to help you and your loved one share the news when they’re ready:
Supporting a Person with Dementia
Your loved one might experience a wide variety of emotions after their diagnosis. They may feel relief after receiving an answer for their symptoms, but they might also develop feelings of grief and loss as their condition progresses. This can be a difficult time for your loved one, but there are also small things you can do to show your support, according to the Alzheimer’s Association:
Living with Dementia at Maplewood Senior Living
At Maplewood Senior Living, we know how difficult it can be to receive a dementia diagnosis. Our communities offer dementia support groups and activities specifically designed for those with dementia. Make your dementia journey easier with Maplewood Senior Living. Contact us to schedule a tour today.
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