Whether or not you're ready to act publicly on a dementia diagnosis, and even if that diagnosis isn't specifically for Alzheimer's, consider making a call now to a local chapter of the Alzheimer's Association. No, it's not too early. Knowledge is power, and it's wise to tap into a variety of resources.
The Association's national helpline is (800) 272-3900. You'll be able to find many resources specific to your area, such as professional referrals and support groups. Here are some of the things you can ask an Alzheimer's Association chapter to do:
Help you find camaraderie and advice in a support group for Alzheimer's caregivers
Help you find nearby clinical trials for drugs in development
Act as a clearinghouse to point you to other community services for support, respite, and information
Enroll you in an Alzheimer's Association workshop to learn more about the disease and how to cope with it
Tell you about Comfort Zone and MedicAlert + Alzheimer's Association Safe Return, two programs that locate wanderers