This post contains affiliate links. That means that I will receive a small commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra charge to you. Please see my full affiliate policy here.
As the baby-boomer generation ages, their children often end up being caregivers for their parents. This task is made easier by resources found online and locally. It’s essential to take advantage of these resources not only to gain insight into caring for your parent/patient but also to remind you, the caregiver, that you need to take care of yourself in order to be able to care for someone else. (See this article to learn more about taking care of yourself.)
Online Caregiver Resources
- Alzheimers Association is a treasure trove of resources! As the leading US organization regarding Alzheimer’s, you would expect them to provide a lot of information, but I was blown away by all they had. Everything from what to expect to caregiver support to planning and more.
- AARP The American Association of Retired Persons is also a great place to find resources and help in caring for your parent. This is the website for all of us 50-somethings to find guidance and support for those of us in a caregiver position. Being AARP, they know the challenges faced by our generation. Our children are growing or grown and producing grandchildren, yet we must also provide care for parents or aging relatives. There are guides available for every step of the process as well as communities to find information from those who are going through the same thing.
- National Institute on Aging is part of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, as you would expect, has loads of information. Here you can find information on Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias care, research and support. There are definitions of the disease, causes, diagnosis and treatment, clinical trial information and a special caregiver area.
- Dementia Caregiver Resources, Inc., a non-profit organization founded by Karen (Karle) Truman after caring for her own relatives. This site is new to me but appears to be full of valuable information.
- Caring.com has all the basic information about Alzheimer’s but it also provides resources for situations when the parent is no longer able to stay home. They work with facilities nationwide and have information on what is available in your area. One caution, once they get your email or phone number they will hound you. When looking for information on care facilities in my area I explained that I would not be needing anything for at least a year, however, my information was sent to local facilities who continue to contact me.
Local Caregiver Resources
- State or County Agency on Aging can provide help related to the laws of your state. You may be eligible to receive compensation for caring for your relative. Each state varies, so be sure to check yours.
- Local Hospitals often have caregiver support groups which allow you to meet up and discuss options with others in your situation. If you are able to get away for a couple of hours this can be a wonderful opportunity to talk to others. Learning you are not alone is often enough to get you through.
These resources are but a few available. I hope they prove helpful to you. Remember, you are not alone, others have gone through this. Reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness. Others may have suggestions that will make a marked difference in how you get through this experience. Do you have other resources that you recommend? Please share them in the comments.