Sources for Finding Professional Help with Alzheimer's
Caring for someone with Alzheimer's disease can be a full-time job, even if you're lucky enough to have the help of family and friends. Thankfully, there are people in the professional world who are employed for the sole purpose of helping you manage your loved one's needs.
Below are some examples of sources for professionals help with Alzheimer's, what they can do for you, and how to contact them.
Your local Area Agency on Aging (AAA)
These agencies will assess your needs and connect you with services.
Examples of services they may be able to help with include food and prepared meals, transportation, and home care. If you are unsure where to find this number you can call information to be connected or check online.
Your health insurance company
You may be eligible for services that you don't even know about depending on your coverage.
Home health care companies are providers that offer assistance with activities of daily living. These services are offered by some insurances to help ensure the quality of life throughout the aging process. Call your insurance company and see what benefits you may have.
Hospital social workers and case managers
Ask to meet with the social worker or case manager next time you find yourself in the hospital. Hospitals have a pulse on many local resources to share. See what services and supports their network may be able to offer.
The Veteran's Affairs Administration (VA)
If you or your loved one is a veteran it is always worth a call to the VA to learn about your benefits. I have the most success when I ask to speak directly with a social worker. They are familiar with the necessary paperwork, eligibility criteria, and benefits.
The most helpful benefit that I help people with Alzheimer's apply for is called the Aid and Attendance Benefit, which provides funding for veterans who utilize the eldercare network. Other ways the VA may be able to help include immobility equipment respite care, and adult daycare.
Other sources for professional help
Online support groups and forums are often frequented by professionals and other caregivers who can provide useful tips on activities of daily living such as lifting, bathing, toileting, and feeding.
Churches may be able to help connect you to a support group. Donation centers are good places to look when you are in need of affordable equipment such as portable toilets, wheelchairs, walkers, and shower chairs.
Professional help for Alzheimer's
Please know that you are not alone in wishing you had help caring for your loved one with Alzheimer's disease. Receiving help from a professional can result in less time spent as your loved one's nurse, scheduler, pharmacist, chef, and driver, and more time spent being a family member or friend again.
Please reach out. We are here to help.
Do you find legal and financial jargon in dementia care confusing?