If you are caring for someone with dementia, HopeHealth Dementia & Alzheimer’s Services can help. Our clinicians offer information, education and support to individuals and families in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. We are dementia-inclusive, which means we are familiar with all types of dementia.
What is the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s disease?
Dementia is a general term referring to a decline in mental function—such as memory, thinking and reasoning—severe enough to interfere in daily life.
More than 70 types of brain diseases can cause dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type. Lewy body dementia and Parkinson’s disease are others.
Alzheimer’s is a degenerative disease of the brain that diminishes a person’s ability to reason, remember, respond to the environment and carry out the most basic tasks. However, the symptoms of Alzheimer’s can be managed when family caregivers receive education and support.
How does Alzheimer’s impact family caregivers?
Currently, 5.3 million people in the U.S. have a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, including 120,000 who live in Massachusetts. Most are cared for in the home by their family members.
Caring for a person with Alzheimer’s disease is physically, emotionally and financially challenging. Many caregivers find it hard to handle the day-to-day demands, changing family roles and difficult decisions. These demands only intensify as the disease progresses.
“I think it’s a wonderful program. The support group is very well handled. It's a nice group and we get to talk about our situations. I enjoy being there and it’s something I look forward to.”
— Anonymous support-group participant
What is a dementia-caregiver support group and how can it help me?
Caring for someone with dementia can be overwhelming, and it often helps to talk with people going through a similar experience.
Our educational support groups are led by specially-trained volunteers who can help you solve the many challenges that come up as dementia progresses over time. You might consider attending a group to:
- Better understand Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.
- Learn about resources and options available to you or your loved one.
- Get help with a current concern.
- Seek advice about your caregiving challenges.
- Hear from and share with others who are having similar experiences in a comfortable, confidential and supportive environment.
Learn more about the support groups for family caregivers that we offer in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.