Worried about memory loss in a loved one?

Worried about your loved ones memory loss?

If you’re worried about your loved one’s forgetfulness,
feel it’s getting worse or that the memory problems
are starting to interfere with everyday life, it’s time to
talk to a health care professional.
Why is “getting checked” important? Because there are
benefits to identifying and addressing memory loss,
including:
• To find out what may be causing the problems – there
are reasons for memory loss and confusion that are
treatable. Some conditions that cause dementia, such
as normal pressure hydrocephalus, thyroid problems
or a vitamin deficiency, are treatable or reversible.
Even if it turns out to be a type of dementia, it’s
best to get a diagnosis and help early in the disease
process.
• A health care professional can provide better clinical
care for all your medical conditions with a diagnosis,
when they understand what is happening.
• You, your loved one and other family members can
more easily plan for the future when you know what
you are dealing with. A diagnosis makes taking the
next steps a bit easier.

* Obtain a medical assessment to find out what
may be causing the problems.
* Complete health care planning documents.
Your loved one should have:
– A Health Care Directive (also called a “living
will” or “advance directive” regarding treatment
preferences); and
– A Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care,
appointing a health care “agent.”
* Complete a General Durable Power of
Attorney document. In this document, your
loved one appoints an “agent” to assist with
financial and related matters.
* Complete an estate plan. Your loved one’s
estate plan may include legal documents such
as a will or a trust that direct the disposition of
their estate upon death.
* Have a family meeting to discuss what’s
happening, and necessary next steps.

Details from Washington state DSHS Demential Roadmap https://www.dshs.wa.gov/sites/default/files/ALTSA/stakeholders/documents/AD/Dementia%20Road%20Map%20-%20A%20Guide%20for%20Family%20and%20Care%20Partners.pdf

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