Alzheimer's Tennessee, Inc. – Support, Education and Research for Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias

Caregiving in a COVID World

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed added stress on already burdened families living with Alzheimer's and other dementias.   

At times like this caregivers can feel especially isolated and overwhelmed. 

Alzheimer's Tennessee, in partnership with Vanderbilt University Medical Center, offers resources designed to help family caregivers take care of their loved ones and themselves during these troubled times.

This brochure is a guide to some of the resources available to family caregivers. Click here to download a copy of the brochure. Some of the highlights and information from this brochure are avaialable at the bottom of the page.

The videos below offer even more information to help deal with the special challenges caregivers face in these times. They include practical tips, solutions for communication problems and challenging behaviors and engagement strategies. You will also find an important video to help caregivers identify and manage the stress in their own lives.  

Caregiving Challenges Presented by COVID

Licensed Social Worker Cheryl Blanchard outlines some of the special challenges facing caregivers and their loved ones who may feel isolated by COVID restrictions. She offers tips on how to spot issues and deal with them before they become a problem.


Practical Help for Caregivers During COVID

Eileen Poiley is the Director of Education at the University of South Florida Byrd Alzheimer’s Research Institute in Tampa, Florida. She helps caregivers understand how COVID restrictions can be especially concerning for those living with dementia and offers practical tips for dealing with them.   

Communication and Challenging Behaviours during COVID

Social isolation and disrupted routines caused by COVID can make it hard to cummunicate with those living with dementia and ramp up challenging behaviors. Licensed Social Worker Cheryl Blanchard offers communication tips and helps you fugure out what your loved one is trying to tell you.

Stress Reduction for Caregivers During COVID

Caring for a loved one with dementia is stressful in the best of times. COVID restrictions have only increased the problem. Dementia care expert Eileen Poiley offers strategies to help reduce stress felt by caregivers. 

Activities of Engagement in a COVID World

Kareen King is a Registered Drama Therapist and Creative Engagement Specialist. She will help you discover exciting new ways to provide meaningful and engaging experiences for older adults as well as creative care-giving tools for those isolated together with a loved one living with dementia.


Resources for Caregivers During COVID-19

What Can I Do as a Caregiver?

Don’t be isolated. Join a virtual or in-person Support Group. Weekly Family Caregiver Supports Groups. Alzheimer's Tennessee offers three weekly virtual support groups available by computer, tablet or telephone. 

You can find more information on these support groups and others around Tennessee at

Memory Cafes are offered weekly for Individuals with a diagnosis of Mild Cognitive Impairment or early stage Alzheimer’s.

  • Tuesday: 10:00 AM CST / 11:00 AM EST
  • Thursday: 9:00AM CST / 10:00 AM EST

Call for more information:


If You are Stressed:

Stress can cause:

  • Feelings of fear, anger, sadness, worry, numbness or frustration
  • Feelings of fear, anger, sadness, worry, numbness or frustration
  • Changes in appetite, energy, desires and interest
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Physical reactions, headaches,body pains, stomach problems
  • Worsening of chronic health conditions and mental health concerns


Ways to cope with stress:

  • Take deep breaths, stretch or meditate
  • Eat a healthfully
  • Exercise regularly
  • Get plenty of sleep


More Resources

In addition to resources and support provided By Alzheimer’s Tennessee, The following resources are available through the following State and Federal Agencies:

Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability

Call 1-615-741-2056 or go to Contact TCAD for Assistance with:

  • Transportation
  • Food Assistance
  • Elder Abuse
  • Vaccinations


Visitation in long-term care facilities

Visitation Guidance in Tennessee has deferred to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Contact CMS for guidelines for long-term care facilitates and visitation during Covid 19. Click here for more information.


Mental Health

If your are experiencing a mental health Emergency or thinking of taking your own life, please call or text Tennessee Statewide Crisis Line at 1-855-274-7471 or Text"TN" to 741-741.


These resources are supported in part by Vanderbilt University Medical Center Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program, HRSA Grant 1-U1Q-HP 033085-01-00 

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