A diagnosis of dementia affects the entire family. A living person with dementia needs more and more help as the disease progresses. Family members, at least at first, give much of the help required.
To give this help, they often have to take on new responsibilities, adapt to greater demands upon their time or alter the patterns of their own lives. These changes may be extremely stressful, both physically and emotionally.
Note: Since the relative needing help is often a parent, we will refer to the distant relative as "parent" and the caregiver as the "adult child." The information also holds true for others within the family who have different relationships.