Speaking to Children and Teens about Alzheimer's Disease
Finding out that someone close to you has Alzheimer’s disease and coping with this progressive illness can be distressing for anyone.
The children and grand-children of people with Alzheimer’s disease are also touched by the disease and children and teenagers can find it particularly difficult. Young people may feel neglected or resentful as parents devote more time to looking after a grandparent. Younger children may be frightened by the behaviours that they observe in the person with the disease. ‘Why does Grandma call me by my mother’s name?` ‘Why doesn’t Grandpa take me into his workshop any more?` Some young people may ask questions while others may refuse or make up excuses not to visit their grandparents. The situation becomes even more complicated if the person with the dementia is the parent. In this case, the young person often becomes a caregiver in many ways. Roles may be reversed, adding to the unease. Families touched by dementia are affected in numerous and often unexpected ways.
It is natural to want to protect children and young people from upsetting and confusing situations. However, explaining the situation can be a great stress reducer for all concerned.
In this webinar we will propose ways to speak and how to listen to young people, how to encourage the expression of feelings, as well as examining potential strategies for interaction.
A Live Chat will follow this presentation from 1pm to 2pm (EDT).
You can join the chat here: https://www.huddol.com/join/AlzMontreal.