At any age, hearing about an illness like Alzheimer's disease or another dementia can be scary and confusing.
For children or teenagers, it can be a very difficult adjustment, says Marianne Luther, the regional support and education coordinator for the Prince Rupert area for the non-profit Alzheimer Society of B.C.
“The key to supporting children and teens who are close to someone with dementia is to share information with them that is clear and easy to understand,” she says.
“It is also important for them to know that the changes they are seeing in the person with dementia are due to the disease process, and that there is no one to blame.”
If possible, she suggests, parents should try to engage their children in providing care and support to the person with dementia.
“Emphasize that simply being with the person with dementia and showing them love and affection is the most important thing they can do.”
For more information on Alzheimer’s disease, including details on the local support and information groups – one for family caregivers and one for people in the early stages of the disease -- contact Luther toll-free at 1-866-564-7533 or mluther,,,alzheimerbc.org Residents can also visit the society website at www.alzheimerbc.org