BOZEMAN — Montana State University Extension has created a new magazine on Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias that is designed especially for Montana farmers and ranchers.
Montana has more than 21,000 people living with Alzheimer’s disease, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, including agricultural producers, said Marsha Goetting, MSU Extension family economics specialist.
“Family caregivers (of agricultural producers) have approached me asking about financial and health care powers of attorney when I present estate and legacy planning meetings across the state,” Goetting said.
MSU Extension developed “Alzheimer’s and Related Dementias: Support for Montana Farmers and Ranchers” magazine to provide more information about Alzheimer’s disease and its impact on farmers and ranchers, Goetting said. The magazine is designed for Montana agricultural producers facing the early to middle stages of Alzheimer's diseases, their families and family caregivers.
“Unfortunately, there is still a stigma attached to Alzheimer’s and other related forms of dementia,” said Goetting. “It’s not a person’s fault when their brain shrinks and they can’t remember or perform chores like they used to. Alzheimer’s is a disease, not a normal part of aging.”
Magazine article topics include potential causes, signs and early diagnosis; definitions of normal parts of aging; the progression of Alzheimer’s disease; caregiver wellness; communicating about a diagnosis; and options for treatment. The magazine also highlights Alzheimer’s disease research and treatments, and it includes some stories of Montana farm and ranch families who have a family member who has Alzheimer’s disease.
Goetting, who provides estate planning programs statewide, webinars and online town halls for AARP-Montana, said that farmers and ranchers in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease can complete legal documents to ensure that their families know their financial, health and legacy planning wishes.
To get a printed copy of the magazine, contact the local MSU Extension office or order online at A digital copy of the magazine is also online.

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