Dementia care

If you have been dealing with a loved one with Dementia then you are probably looking for as much help and answers that you can get. Dementia can be very difficult and frustrating to deal with. In order to help a loved one with dementia is it important to understand the disease and what is causing the symptoms.

Dementia is when the cognitive functioning of the brain progressively declines. This is usually caused by a disease in the body or damage done to the brain. As people age it is common to have a certain level of dementia as part of the normal geriatric phase of life, however, severe dementia can happen at any stage in adult life when there is something else that has caused the disease. Dementia can be brought on by strokes, having Alzheimer’s disease or can be caused by several other diseases as well.

People suffering from dementia may have difficulties performing daily activities. Activities such as eating, bathing or even getting dressed can become a challenge. Most often dementia can cause memory loss or language problems. Other symptoms may include the inability of patients to think for themselves or to solve simple problems. A person’s mood and personality may change drastically and they may believe they see things that do not exist.

Since dementia is a problem caused by the brain that has been damaged, there is no real cure for the disease. You cannot repair brain damage, but there are medicines that may be able to help control some of the symptoms and slow the progression of the disease. If the dementia is a side effect of Alzheimer’s disease then some medications are being administered to patients in order to help slow the process of memory loss and the loss of basic thinking skills. Some of these medications are Aricept, Exelon, Reminyl, Cognex and Namenda.

Besides these drugs there are also times in which a doctor will prescribe sedatives, antidepressants and anticonvulsants. These are just to help the patient live a better quality life and lesson symptoms of depression, anxiety, sleep problems, agitation and seizures which can be associated with the disease.

Once a person has been diagnosed with Dementia it is important for the family or loved ones to be an active part in the patient’s life. Unfortunately, once the dementia reaches a certain level the patient can become a hazard to oneself or others. These patients will eventually need round the clock care in order to live their life out of harm’s way. Since patients with dementia often lose the ability to think or rationalize they can harm themselves or others without knowing what they are doing. They also have the ability to wander off without realizing where they are or where they are even going. Before a patient gets to this point, it is important to find a secure and healthy environment where the person can live his or her life in a safe place with someone to watch over them and check on them often.

If a family member is not able to take care of the person with dementia, often moving the person into a nursing home that specializes in dealing with people with the disease is recommended. This way they can keep track of the patient, deliver medications and offer help when it is needed. Often there are nursing homes that offer entertainment and plenty of physical and mental exercise to keep the patients happy and help them feel at home. Nursing homes are also great places for these folks to socialize and make friends.

Although it can become sad and frustrating to see a loved one go through life with the disease of Dementia, it is a natural stage of life that some people face. The most important thing is for the person to remain safe and have those that they are familiar with involved in their care and life.

Last updated on Apr 22nd, 2009 and filed under Neurological Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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