Alzheimer’s disease, or AD, is a disorder that degenerates the nervous system. It gradually causes deterioration of a person’s mental abilities. People suffering from this disease may be unable to make decisions, do normal activities everyday, or interact with others. Their personalities may undergo changes and make them more prone to anxiety and dementia. They may exhibit atypical behavior and a loss of memory. If a loved one with Alzheimer’s is under your care, the advice below can reduce stress and improve comfort.
Learn More About The Disease and How It Progresses
Compile information about Alzheimer’s by researching at the library or on the Internet. There may be organizations in your area that can educate you about AD without charge. Some facts about the disease are difficult to talk about, but it is better if you know what is ahead of you. Alzheimer’s disease progresses in seven stages. A lot of people suffering from Alzheimer’s did not get their diagnosis until their condition advanced to stage four. Make an attempt to figure out the stage of your loved one’s condition. Keep an eye on the symptoms presented as the disease progresses.
Find The Best Medical Treatment
A diagnosis is made by a medical expert, such as the primary care doctor, a psychiatrist, or a neurologist. One of the tools used is the Mini Mental State Exam, or MMSE. In addition, a PET scan or CAT scan may be done to determine if there is a stroke caused by dementia. A stroke exhibits a memory loss pattern that resembles a set of steps going down, whereas in Alzheimer’s, the deterioration of the mental abilities is more steady. A cure has not been found for Alzheimer’s disease, but there are medicines that can slow down the disease’s progression, enabling the patient to retain his cognitive abilities much longer. Some medicines prescribed include cholinesterase inhibitors such as Aricept, Exelon, and Razadyne. Cholinesterase inhibitors can be used at any time. Namenda, which is glutamate reducer, is often taken to complement cholinesterase in providing therapeutic benefits.
When you have gained a better understanding of Alzheimer’s Disease and how it can affect the life of a person at each stage, you can plan ahead and get ready for the changes that will come up. Your preparations will involve your emotions and your finances. There will come a time when you have to help your loved one with the bathroom and personal hygiene issues. You may have to change how you serve a meal in order to accommodate the individual’s needs. When mobility becomes a problem, you will need to get a wheelchair.
Improve The Safety Of The Environment
Make your home environment as safe as possible. It should be a safe haven for the loved one whom you are caring for. Secure access to potentially hazardous areas and medicine cabinets. Child-safety locks and devices that provide auto shut-off should also be installed. Grab-bars should be installed in the bathroom. Create a way to prevent your loved one from going outside and wandering off.
Expect Changes In Behavior And Personality
A person with Alzheimer’s disease is not able to carry out tasks that are either simple or complex. The cycle of sleeping and waking may be out of sync, so you can expect to lose a few nights of sleep. In addition, your loved one may hallucinate and think that you are not the real person or a foe. Do not forget that you are the caregiver for your loved one, not for the disease. Therefore, treat your loved one in the way that you would like others to treat you.
Enjoy Reminiscing Together
Make attempts to reminisce and enjoy memories from your loved one’s past while he still has some memories. Because Alzheimer’s patients are not able to learn and remember information, sharing stories about their past can help them relive the happy times.
Even though a person suffering from Alzheimer’s disease cannot recognize familiar people, like you, his family, friends or relatives, he can still enjoy laughing together with you as you are interacting with him. Love and kindness know no bounds and can touch everyone, regardless of mental condition.