Alzheimer’s disease – the leading cause of dementia in older people – can have a devastating impact on both the person with the disease, and their surrounding family and friends. Its symptoms are unsettling at the very least, and can be devastating and destructive as the disease progresses.
Too often, dementia (whether it’s Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy Body dementia, vascular dementia, or any other disease that causes dementia) is not diagnosed until the person has been experiencing symptoms for several years. This means that treatment and lifestyle changes will have a limited impact on the person.
An early diagnosis, followed by medical treatment, and dietary and lifestyle adjustments, is the best possible way to guarantee a longer, healthier, and more fulfilling life for the senior.
There is no single diagnostic tool that will provide you with a definitive diagnosis. Rather, a diagnosis is the conclusion of a series of assessments and tests undertaken by doctors and neurologists.
So what can you look out for in your loved one, in order to ensure that they age well and minimise the impact of a dementia-causing disease?
There are 10 identified warning signs or symptoms for Alzheimer’s disease – check out this brochure by the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada for the full list.
Sometimes, living with someone who has dementia can be very challenging. Coping with unexpected personality changes, having to explain simple things in minute detail, perhaps having to repeat yourself ad nauseum, can all take their toll on your emotional strength. A visit from a Platinum support worker on a regular basis can help take the pressure off, and allow you to take precious time out for yourself.