Dedicated Alzheimer’s Care for Seniors in Whippany, NJ
What is Alzheimer’s Disease?
Many older adults experience “senior moments”: they have memory lapses, misplace things or forget something they just read or heard. They may forget the right word for a common object, get easily confused or have trouble with everyday tasks.
Aging typically takes a toll on the brain; so do a wide range of other factors, from depression to nutrition to substance abuse. Or it could be Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s is a form of dementia that occurs when the brain’s nerve cells get tangled and certain proteins build up. The brain damage is irreversible and the patient’s mental and physical functions gradually deteriorate. Eventually, they lose their ability to live independently and will need round-the-clock care, often in specialized memory care environments in assisted living residences.
memory care services in New Jersey: (973) 929-2725
10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease
Diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease
Researchers are aggressively looking for ways to diagnose Alzheimer’s early in life, before symptoms emerge. But for now, it’s only after the early signs of dementia appear when doctors can detect the disease.
Alzheimer’s symptoms can be identical to those of stroke, infection, brain tumor, Parkinson’s disease, thyroid problems and other conditions, so the doctor(s) must first identify the underlying cause. Reaching a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is a multi-step process starting with a thorough physical exam and medical history. There will also be a cognitive screening for memory, verbal skills, problem solving, and thinking skills, and a mood assessment. Other diagnostic methods may include an MRI and/or PET scan. Family members may be asked about changes they may have noticed.
Treatment and care for Alzheimer’s patients
Alzheimer’s has no treatment and no cure, but medication can often delay its progress and help moderate some symptoms. Therefore, the sooner a person is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s—or any other form of dementia-the sooner interventions can begin. That could make all the difference in the patient’s quality of life as he or she progresses through the disease.
If you’re the caregiver of someone in the early stages of Alzheimer’s, now is the time to talk with them about long-term options down the road. Encourage exercise and brain-teasers to keep body and mind in shape, as memory care and support will become an increasingly important part of your lives.