Dementia explained to Kids!

It is important to have dementia information specifically for children

...to help them understand what is happening, especially when it involves a close member of the family. Parents often have limited information and understandably could find it hard to talk about to a child. From a child's perspective it could be frightening and even confusing to stand by helplessly knowing and understanding very little about what is happening to their loved one and the likely outcome.

Children notice symptoms

Symptoms being experienced by a grandparent, for instance, that a child could find distressing would include short term memory loss.......not knowing which day it is or which meal they last had or which cutlery to use, not knowing the child's name or where they are; being uncharacteristically moody or appearing very anxious or unresponsive.

Never in human history have we lived so well or so long. Unfortunately, the frequency of diseases such as Alzheimers Disease, Lewy Body dementia and related disorders (dementia also referred to as being senile or having senile dementia) that become more common in old age, has increased with the aging of society.

How did the book come about?

Some years ago after I had been working with dementia patients for almost 10 years in my capacity as a registered nurse, it occurred to me one day, that there was absolutely no literature at all available for children about dementia or Alzheimers disease so I resolved to change that.

The end result was this little children's book, "Grandma Doesn't Know Me Any More". It was well received among families affected by the disease, Alzheimer and dementia special interest groups and libraries particularly in Australia and now is available as an e-book worldwide.

What's the book about?

This book provides an opportunity for children to broaden their understanding of such disorders. To all the kids out there with the unbearable burden of a loved one with a decaying mind, it is my hope that by sharing this story of Andrew and his Grandma with you, you will develop a greater understanding, awareness and compassion.

This story is a heartwarming account of a young boy's perceptions of his grandmother's struggle with dementia. This story looks closely at dementia and shares the feelings and reactions of a child and his family. Younger children coping with a grandparent with dementia would definitely benefit from reading this book.

Illustrations and resources

The book is illustrated in a fun and often, poignant way. It includes a special note for parents and teachers. Patient information, care information and research information can be found via websites given with national and international resources. This excellent introduction to dementia for children is just one click away........the subject matter is very timely, well researched and easily understood.


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About the author

Elizabeth Gray was a registered nurse for over 30 years. Much of her work was concerned with the rehabilitation and management of degenerative diseases. To learn more about Elizabeth's other publications:

Arthritis explained to Kids
Parkinsons explained to Kids
Strokes explained to Kids
Arthritis Self Management Programme
Constipation relief Now!