Most people do not believe that they are likely to experience a major natural disaster, so many do not plan for the possibility that one might occur. Yet a majority of us live in places that experience one or more kinds of disasters, including tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, wildfires, mudslides and earthquakes. Older adults may be particularly vulnerable in such disasters, so planning in advance can help older adults and their families to be safer and to reduce stress.
For older adults and families, see It Could Happen to Me: Family Conversations About Disaster Planning (pdf) for the ABCs of disaster preparedness.
Families with a loved one with dementia face additional challenges in planning for natural disasters. They need to keep not only themselves safe, but also a loved one who may not understand what is happening, who may not be able to help, and who may even hinder the process of preparing. The Calm Before the Storm: Family Conversations about Disaster Planning, Caregiving, Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia (pdf) draws on insight from families and caregivers with a loved one with dementia to provide suggestions and information about how families can plan more successfully for natural disasters.
Other Resources Include:
- The American Red Cross offers tips for preparing for different kinds of disaster situations
- The CDC has a site on Emergency Preparedness and Older Adults and Planning Tips (pdf)
- The American Veterinary Medical Association’s booklet Saving the Whole Family for suggestions on planning to keep pets safe