By Judith Horvath;
In this day of hustle and bustle it is very easy to find that there is little time to deal with a close relative or friend who is having memory problems.
It may occur to you that someone you care deeply about is having serious issues. Steps usually taken are continuing trips to their doctor to see if there are new medications that can be administered to stop this progression. It may or may not slow down the process. Many times meds just do not really work after time. Make no mistake Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive disease and there is no known way to prevent its eventual progression, but there are ways to deal better with this on a daily basis.
One of the guiding principles is to not try to change the person and their perception of reality. Their reality is not what yours might be. To redirect, distract rather than to challenge, are key in dealing with difficult behaviors.
Some of the facts noted below are taken from Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimers.org, with their permission. This is an invaluable website resource for anyone trying to navigate the waters of memory issues.
- It’s estimated that Alzheimer’s costs to our country will soar to over $1.2 Trillion per year by 2050.
- More than 5 million Americans are living with the disease.
- Caregivers both paid and unpaid provide hours of care to those suffering from this disease.
Alzheimer’s is a disease that attacks the brain. It is the most common form of dementia. Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life.
Alzheimer’s disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States overall and the 5th leading cause of death for those aged 65 and older. It is the only cause of death among the top 10 in America without a way to prevent it, cure it or even slow its progression.
In an article on Vision.org, “Why Alzheimer’s Disease? Thinking About What We’ve Done,” Alice Abler explains, “Gender, heredity, low educational attainment levels, poorly controlled diabetes, advanced age, disrupted sleep, lack of mental activity and smoking can all be linked to memory loss, dementia and Alzheimer’s.” However, a nutritious diet, physical activity, social engagement and mentally stimulating pursuits might help to reduce risk.