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Advance medical directives, dementia and Alzheimer's

For some Colorado residents, the thought of developing dementia or Alzheimer's is a frightening possibility. Unfortunately, this can become a reality. Although there is currently no cure, there are steps that can be taken now to direct the treatment he or she wishes to receive after the ability to make such decisions has passed. Along with open, honest discussions with one's family and physicians, the use of advance medical directives can be beneficial to all involved.

Advance medical directives have been in use for a number of years. Recently, however, some have discovered that it may be advantageous to create such documents with the possibility of dementia or Alzheimer's in mind. In other words, the type of care one needs and wants often changes over the course of the disease.

In the beginning stages of these diseases, the individual may wish to receive necessary medical care. Quality of life and family enjoyment is still there and the individual wants to remain a part of this as long as possible. However, as the disease progresses, it is possible that the individual's desire for preventative and even life-saving measures may change. This can be included as a part of the instructions in the advance medical directive.

Once signs of dementia or Alzheimer's appear, it is often too late for advance medical directives to be created. With this in mind, the Colorado resident may want to think through what he or she truly desires and then take the steps necessary to put this into place. Experienced legal counsel can assist with this.

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