Alzheimer's & Dementia Online Academy Course

The Impact of Substance Use Disorders Among Older Adults

This course teaches participants about the relationship between dementia and substance misuse, and the barriers to treatment that many older adults experience. 1.75 continuing education credits (clinical course) available.

About this Course

1.75 continuing education credits (clinical course) available. In American society, older adults with a substance use disorder can experience stigma and ageism. This can result in a lack of attention from healthcare providers, effective assessment tools specific to the presentation of substance misuse among older adults, and effective treatments. This course will provide an overview of how substance use disorders affect the brain which can lead to an increased risk of dementia. This section will also explain that substance misuse, PTSD, depression and other mental illnesses are underdiagnosed among older adults due to the overlapping of symptoms for all of these disorders, as well as normal, age-related reasons. Participants will then learn about the connection between substance use disorders and dementia, especially chronic alcohol misuse and early onset Alzheimer’s disease. This course will then explain the specific barriers older adults experience when accessing healthcare which can lead to an oversight of chronic substance misuse. Lastly, this course will explore how to incorporate the family and support systems in treatment and recovery to ensure a comprehensive approach. From this course you will learn to:
  1. Define addiction and different forms of substance use.
  2. Identify the relationship between substance use and dementia.
  3. Describe stigma and understand both substance use and dementia-related stigma.
  4. Assess different barriers to access and meaningful treatments for intervention.
  5. Apply effective strategies to reduce stigma leading to an increase in health/well-being of individuals w/substance use disorders.
1.75 CE credits available for social workers licensed in an ASWB accredited state, as well as New York State licensed social workers. (Please note: New Jersey is not currently covered under our ASWB accreditation, please check back soon). The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America #1898, is approved as an ACE provider to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Regulatory boards are the final authority on courses accepted for continuing education credit. ACE provider approval period: 7/25/2023 – 7/25/2024. Social workers completing this course receive 1.75 continuing education credits. Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, Inc. is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0222.  For all disability accommodation needs, please contact

(Cost: $25)

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