Older adults and their families often worry about Alzheimer’s disease, and it’s common to fret over each new bout of memory loss. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, approximately 5.8 million people in America are living with the disease, and the majority of those people are over the age of 65. Since Alzheimer’s starts off slowly, it helps to know how to detect the early symptoms and plan for the others that occur during the later stages.
Memory Loss that Disrupts Normal Daily Life
Memory lapses happen to everyone at some point. While you shouldn’t worry about your senior loved one forgetting an appointment during a busy time, you do need to worry when memory issues begin to make it difficult for him or her to function. Seniors with Alzheimer’s can forget things such as how to turn off the oven, which poses a safety risk. They may also forget to take their medication or even eat. Seeking treatment for the condition and arranging for help around the house makes it easier for seniors to continue to function independently.
The days, weeks, and months following an Alzheimer’s diagnosis can be challenging for both seniors and their families. However, these challenges can be made less stressful with the help of caregivers trained in professional Alzheimer’s care. Highland Park Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one enjoy the golden years while simultaneously managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s.
Confusion Regarding Time & Place
Seniors with Alzheimer’s disease may forget what year it is or where they are. You may notice this if your retired loved one claims he or she needs to get ready for work. Your loved one may also show signs such as suddenly being confused about how he or she arrived at the grocery store.
Difficulty Completing Basic Tasks
Short-term memory loss is the most common symptom seniors experience in early-stage Alzheimer’s disease. Over time, the disease also begins to affect procedural memory, which is the type of memory that helps you remember how to do basic tasks, such as tying your shoes and preparing a favorite recipe you know by heart. Seniors who have procedural memory loss need help with things such as cooking, paying bills, and handling basic household maintenance.
Caring for senior loved ones can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
Challenges with Understanding Visual Input
Alzheimer’s also affects how the brain processes visual information. Your loved one may have difficulty seeing contrast between certain colors, which could pose challenges with getting dressed and being able to distinguish between levels of a floor so he or she understands when to step up or down. He or she may also find it challenging to judge distances or understand symbols on safety signs. Once your loved one demonstrates this symptom, it may no longer be safe for him or her to drive alone.
Decisions that Are Out of Character
Poor judgment is another symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. Seniors with this condition often begin to do things they would have never done in the past. For instance, they may decide to hop in their cars and drive to far-off destinations, go on spending sprees, start drinking alcohol excessively, or engage in other risky activities. Helping your loved one treat the Alzheimer’s symptoms can protect him or her from the damage that can arise from making poor decisions.
There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Home Care Assistance is a leading Highland Park elder care provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life. Call Home Care Assistance at (214) 363-3400 to learn more about our flexible and customizable senior care plans.