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Alzheimer's Disease Support (cont.)

Living Alone with Alzheimer's Disease

With assistance, many individuals can live on their own during the early stage of Alzheimer's disease.

  • Arrange for someone to help you with housekeeping, chores, meals, and transportation. For information about assistance available in your community, contact your local chapter of the Alzheimer's Association or your physician.
  • Make arrangements for direct deposit of checks, such as your paycheck (if you work), pension, and Social Security benefits.
  • Make arrangements for help in paying bills. You can give someone you trust the legal authority to handle financial matters.
  • Have family, friends, or a community service program call or visit daily. Keep a list of things for these people to check and a list of concerns to discuss with them.
  • Give a set of house keys to a trusted neighbor.
  • Ask someone to regularly check your smoke alarm, fire alarm, and other security devices.

Preparing for the Future with Alzheimer's Disease

  • Plan ahead for your living arrangements for when you become unable to live on your own. Research residential care facilities such as assisted living facilities and nursing homes.
  • Find out what financial services are available to you (for example, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, disability insurance).
  • Ensure that your legal matters are in place. These include advance directives, your will, power of attorney, and other legal issues. In some communities, legal assistance may be offered at low or no cost through legal aid organizations.
  • If you work outside of the home, you will need to talk with your employer about your diagnosis.
    • You may want to bring educational materials and someone with you to help explain your situation.
    • Discuss the possibility of switching to a position that better matches your abilities, or ask about the possibility of reducing your hours.
    • Find out about early retirement options and employee benefits that may be available to you.
    • Ask your employer who else should know about your diagnosis.
    • Tell your coworkers that you may become frustrated or frustrating when you have trouble remembering information or finding the right words.
    • Use memos and a calendar to help you remember important meetings and duties.
    • Continue to work for as long as you and your physician feel you are able. When you stop working, find an activity (such as volunteering or a new hobby) to take the place of your job.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/1/2014
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