Alzheimers FAQs and How Elder Care Helps Seniors in Spartanburg, SC and the Surrounding Area
What Is Alzheimer's?
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, degenerative brain disorder that is characterized by memory loss, cognitive decline, and behavioral changes. Symptoms worsen over time, usually over several years, and can increase the difficulty of daily tasks dramatically.
Alzheimer’s is considered a terminal condition, with an average life expectancy of 4 to 8 years after diagnosis, though some individuals live 15 or 20 years after their initial diagnosis. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Roughly 5.5 million Americans, the vast majority of whom are older adults (over the age of 65), are living with Alzheimer’s. Early Onset Alzheimer’s, on the other hand, affects approximately 200,000 Americans under the age of 65, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
If you have a loved one who has been recently diagnosed, you probably have many questions. This FAQ will help answer some of the questions by professionals at Visiting Angels of Spartanburg. It will also explain the best elder care practices for those managing the disease. More info about Alzheimer’s below
What is the Difference Between Dementia and Alzheimer's?
Dementia is an umbrella term for a wide range of brain disorders that are characterized by memory loss. Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia. According to estimates, Alzheimer’s cases account for somewhere between 60% to 80% of all cases of dementia.
It is therefore true that everyone with Alzheimer’s has dementia, but not everyone with dementia has Alzheimer’s. Individuals who are living with vascular dementia, for instance, will suffer symptoms similar to Alzheimer’s, but the cause of their dementia is different.
What are the Risk Factors for Alzheimer’s?
While scientists are still researching the exact cause of Alzheimer’s disease, researchers have identified a number of risk factors.
The three biggest risk factors are as follows:
- Advanced Age. In the vast majority of cases, symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease begin after the age of 65.
- Genetics. Individuals with a family history of Alzheimer’s are at higher risk of developing the disease themselves.
- Heart Health. Poor cardiovascular health increases one’s risk. Individuals with a history of hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, stroke, or cardiac arrest will be at higher risk.
Other risk factors include:
- Sleeping problems
- High stress levels
- Heavy smoking
- Heavy drinking
- History of head trauma
- Exposure to air pollution
What are the Symptoms of Alzheimer’s?
Most symptoms, particularly early signs of Alzheimer’s, are expressed through a person’s speech, thought patterns, and behaviors.
The most prominent symptoms include:
- Short-term and long-term memory loss
- Trouble solving simple problems
- Uncommon struggles with day-to-day activities
- Words forgotten or mixed up
- Items lost more frequently
- Confusion about current time or place
- Confusion about the names and identities of people
- Irrational, irritable, or depressed behaviors and actions
What are the Options for Alzheimer’s Care?
As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, individuals living with the disease require high levels of elder care to ensure their well-being and safety. Individuals with early-stage and mid-stage Alzheimer’s are typically cared for by friends or family. But as the disease reaches its later stages, professional Alzheimer’s care is often required.
One option for elder care is moving your loved one into a nursing care facility. However, this can be traumatic for individuals with Alzheimer’s, and it is typically considered a last resort.
Another option is to hire Alzheimer’s home care services, such as those offered by Visiting Angels of Spartanburg. This specialized in-home elder care helps individuals age in place with Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s home elder care is distinct from traditional home care since individuals with Alzheimer’s have distinct care needs from other seniors. Visiting Angels' specialized elder care is designed around the unique challenges of the disease and the recipient’s individual care needs. Care is provided in the comfort of the recipient’s home, and services are performed by caregivers who are uniquely qualified to care for individuals living with Alzheimer’s.
Learn more about Alzheimer’s care services offered by Visiting Angels today, or contact Visiting Angels of Spartanburg to find out how their unique style of elder care can help today!
Schedule your Free In-Home Assessment Today
Schedule your free in-home assessment today by contacting Visiting Angels of Spartanburg at 864-671-4773.
Serving the Communities from Spartanburg to Taylors
Visiting Angels SPARTANBURG, SC609 E Main St
Duncan, SC 29334