Dementia is a slow decline of cognitive ability, more commonly found among the aging population. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 5 million Americans today have Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. Thus, it’s likely that you or someone you know has a loved one living with dementia.
When an individual develops dementia, his or her ability to make wise decisions declines. If this decline goes unnoticed, and the person continues making legal and financial decisions, the results can be disastrous. So how can you tell if your aging loved one is developing dementia, and when should you step in? A recent Forbes article titled “Aging Parents, Dementia And Financial Decisions: What Is Safe?” chronicles the story of one family against the backdrop of dementia.
The process of diagnosing dementia can be challenging; therefore, it is essential that family members be consistently involved, understanding, and concerned. The Forbes article paints a perfect picture of this. Mara, a concerned daughter, detected signs of impairment when it came to her aging mother’s financial decision-making. She enlisted the help of a doctor, and was allowed to step in before her mother lost the family business and her estate due to poor decisions.
Although Mara was able to save her mother’s estate in the end, she also had to endure gut-wrenching stress and strain during the process. Proper planning ahead of time can make managing the affairs of loved ones with dementia easier on families. Be sure to take steps to ensure that you, your loved ones, and your assets are protected.