If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, there will come a point when you need to explain to grandchildren what is happening to Grandma or Grandpa. Alzheimer's can be difficult for kids to understand and cope with and they may not all respond in the same ways. Both teens and younger children can be very affected by learning their grandparent needs Alzheimer's care and may become very sad, scared, moody or distant. It is important to be patient and honestly answer any questions they have about the disease.
Grandchildren shouldn't be forced into spending time with a grandparent with Alzheimer's if they aren't ready or is having a hard time coping. If the child or teen isn't resistant, though, there are many activities that they can do with their loved one. Activities can include helping with small tasks, such as finding misplaced items and helping with meal preparation, or by engaging in simple games or crafts. Activities to consider are:
- Listening to music and singing
- Making a scrapbook
- Baking cookies
- Reading out loud together from favorite books
- Tend flower gardens or house plants