Alzheimer's Disease: Resources for Patients and Families

Erin Boespflug, pointing to a colorful brain scan image while smiling and addressing a patient across the desk from her
Erin Boespflug, Ph.D., (left) is one of the neuroscientists at OHSU who focuses her research on understanding Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

If you or a loved one has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, it can seem overwhelming. The first step is to learn more about the condition so you can be prepared. Here, you’ll find resources to help, including: 

  • A newsletter you can sign up for 
  • Actions you can take in the early stages 
  • Support groups and a workshop 
  • Information about brain health and Alzheimer’s research 
  • Reliable websites with practical tips and information 

Find additional OHSU Brain Institute patient and family resources.

Alzheimer’s Update newsletter

Our Alzheimer’s Update newsletter offers information on brain health, OHSU research programs and other topics.

What you can do now

If you or someone you know is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, you can steps now. The following can help you enjoy life and prepare for changes ahead.  

Stay healthy: Keep healthy habits. A nutritious diet and exercise can maintain your physical health. Seeing providers regularly for medical, dental and vision care is also important for overall wellness. 

Be social: Spend time with your family and friends doing activities you enjoy. Research shows that staying socially connected can delay memory loss.  

Talk about dementia: Share your diagnosis with those close to you. Be honest about your feelings and the support you need. 

Prepare for change: Expect Alzheimer’s disease to cause changes in your life over time. It can be frustrating to struggle with tasks that used to be easy. Give yourself time to do things, and get help from others when things become difficult. 

Connect with organizations: Join a group such as the Alzheimer’s Association, which can help you and your family adjust. Groups familiar with your condition can help you make life more comfortable and support your independence.

The ACTNOW research project collects information from voluntary participants to promote research. Participants receive research updates and invitations to events and opportunities. The project was started by the Layton Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease Center.  

Learn more about OHSU research on aging, Alzheimer’s and other dementias.

Workshop, support groups and clinic

“Getting Started: Living With Memory Concerns” is a free workshop led by OHSU nurses Gillian Devereux, RN, and Allison Bianchi, M.P.H, M.S.N., RN. It’s for patients, family members and care partners who are new to Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia. The workshop is presented in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association.  

Topics: This one-visit workshop covers living with memory concerns related to Alzheimer’s disease, including: 

  • Care for the person with a memory disorder 
  • Support for the caregiver 
  • Introduction to Alzheimer’s Association programs 
  • Community resources 

When: 3 to 4:30 p.m. on the first Thursday of every month 

Where: 

OHSU Center for Health & Healing Building 1
Neurology clinic, eighth floor
3303 S.W. Bond Ave.
Portland, OR 97239
Map and directions 

Register: Call the Alzheimer’s Association at 800-272-3900 

More information: 

Alzheimer’s Association support groups in Oregon and southwest Washington and in Washington state and northern Idaho.

HOPE Dementia Support: Support groups in the Portland area and in  Clark County, Washington. 

ALZConnected: Online community, sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association, with forums for caregivers and people with dementia.  
 

Kathy Wild, Ph.D., leads a monthly support group for caregivers of people with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and related disorders. 

These conditions often cause challenging behavior and personality changes that can lead to caregiver stress and exhaustion. The group gives caregivers a chance to receive emotional support while sharing strategies and solutions.  

The group is open to families of someone who has received care at the Layton Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease Center. Contact Dr. Wild at 503-494-6975 for more information.

360 Clinic: Our team provides end-of-life guidance for patients and families dealing with Alzheimer’s or another dementia. In our 360 Clinic, we guide patients through a comprehensive 360-degree view of their journey. Using interviews, we review their life goals and refer them to the resources they need to accomplish these goals.

OHSU video library

For caregivers

Download helpful information and resources about Alzheimer’s disease as PDFs that you can print or share with others: 

For patients

  • Referral: To become a patient, please ask your doctor for a referral. 
  • Questions: For questions about arranging a referral or to make a follow-up appointment, call 503-494-7772.
  • Nurse line: To talk with a nurse about questions or concerns, call 503-494-7615.

Location

Parking is free for patients and their visitors.

Center for Health & Healing Building 1, eighth floor
3303 S.W. Bond Ave.
Portland, OR 97239
Map and directions

Refer a patient

‘There are tears, but also laughing’

Kate with her husband in front of a 'Happy Thanksdgiving' chalkboard drawing

Meet Kate, who joined OHSU’s support group for caregivers after her husband was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia (FTD). “We talk to each other, make suggestions, share what's worked, and what hasn't,” Kate says.