In addition asking a person to give up driving, families are also faced with how to handle gun ownership when a relative develops dementia. Health Care professionals are urging families to discuss gun ownership and draw up firearms agreements which would act like an advance directive for what to do with the guns as a person’s disease progresses. Also suggested is appropriate language to use – instead of we are taking away your guns use the word “retire” as in you’re going to retire from the use of your guns.” For the complete story, follow our link to NPR.org. to read how different families have addressed gun ownership with their aging relatives.
Firearms And Dementia: How Do You Convince A Loved One To Give Up Their Guns?
By Melissa Block | NPR.org
Families of people with dementia will often take away the car keys to keep their family member safe. They might remove knobs from stove burners or lock up medicine.
But what’s less talked about is the risk of guns in the home for those with dementia.
That’s a growing problem, as the U.S. population gets older and the number of people with dementia soars. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, that number is expected to double in the next 20 years to about 14 million — the vast majority over the age of 65.
Researchers also estimate that nearly half of people over 65 either own a gun or live in a household with someone who does. Given those statistics, people who work with dementia patients are trying to raise awareness and make gun safety a top priority for families.
The issue came into sharp relief recently for an Aurora, Colo., couple who have been married for 38 years. Keeping reading.