Topics: Aging


Would it be wrong to put my mother who has Alzheimer's disease in a nursing home?


Watching a loved one deteriorate under the impact of Alzheimer's disease is a heart-wrenching experience. It has been estimated that Alzheimer's affects over two million people today. There may well come a time when the care of an Alzheimer's patient in the home is no longer possible and it becomes necessary to place that person in a nursing home where adequate and consistent care is provided.

This may be the most loving and responsible thing to do. However, it is important that you come to your decision prayerfully and in consultation with the doctor and with others of your family who are involved. Perhaps your pastor can be of help as well.

Your difficult decision is one that must be made by many who are facing the struggle of caring for a patient with Alzheimer's disease. If you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord, you can be confident that He will guide you in your decision and care for your needs and those of your loved one. He has promised, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you" (Hebrews 13:5).

The National Council on Aging has several publications on topics relevant to the care of our aging loved ones. You may contact them by writing to the National Council on Aging, 1901 L Street NW, 4th Floor, Washington, DC 20036; phone: (202) 479-1200; fax: (202) 479-0735.