Past studies suggest that caring for individuals with dementia can present several challenges for caregivers, often impacting their physical and emotional health. Consequently, this could impact the quality of care delivered to their care recipients. The goal of this project is to fill a current gap in available services within the community by providing education on risk reduction to care partners of individuals with early-state memory loss or mild cognitive impairment (a condition with subtle memory loss that may precede dementia, including Alzheimer’s dementia).
Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) imposes a major burden for caregivers and other family members. Care partners for individuals with ADRD can have a profound effect on caregivers’ health and wellbeing. ADRD caregivers frequently experience high levels of stress and financial burden from care responsibilities, which can increase risk of emotional, mental, and physical health problems. Formal care partners report higher rates of chronic health conditions such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes (research-based brain health risks), and have higher rates of mortality. Research suggests that these adverse consequences of ADRD caregiving may be alleviated or prevented with respite care, support service, or early education. Ultimately, this pilot project aims to build on the timely dissemination of brain health information to an underserved population—care partners of individuals with early-stage memory loss or mild cognitive impairment.