Severe weather can create stressful situations for people affected by Alzheimerâ€™s disease
More than 500,000 Illinois citizens impacted by Alzheimerâ€™s disease
STATEâ€”Recent severe weather conditions in Illinois have prompted the Alzheimerâ€™s Associationâ€”Greater Illinois Chapter to remind the public that loved ones with dementia will need extra help in the event of a weather related emergency.
Weather conditions during the summer months in Illinois can include tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, flooding and many other extremes. All of these situations can significantly add to stress levels and cause confusion for people with Alzheimerâ€™s disease or a related dementia. For people with moderate to severe Alzheimerâ€™s, stress and confusion can lead to risky and distressing behaviors, such as wandering off, agitation and surprising emotional outbursts.
â€œCurrently in Illinois there are nearly 350,000 Alzheimerâ€™s/dementia Caregivers,â€ said Erna Colborn, president and CEO of the Greater Illinois Chapter. â€œIt is imperative that your caregiving plan include what to do in the event of a weather related emergency. It is also important that you register your loved one with MedicAlert+Safe Return, a national database that will help reunite lost loved ones with their family and friends, available through our association.â€
For more information call the Associationâ€™s 24/7 Helpline at 1-800-272-3900 or visit www.alz.org/illinois.
Prepare an Alzheimerâ€™s-specific â€˜emergency kitâ€™
â€¢ Sturdy footwear
â€¢ Something familiar to
hug (pillow, toy)
â€¢ Extra medications,
â€¢ A copy of the personâ€™s
Security card, power
â€¢ Contact information
â€¢ The Alzheimerâ€™s
â€¢ Favorite items
â€¢ Recent photograph of
If you know a disastrous situation is about to occur
â€¢ Get yourself and the person with Alzheimerâ€™s to a safe place.
â€¢ Alert others (family, friends and medical team) you are
relocating; give them contact information.
â€¢ Give the personâ€™s medical history, medications and
physician information to someone other than the
â€¢ Purchase extra medications.