All About Dementia

Dementia is described as a group of symptoms affecting cognitive functions of the body, which interfere in one’s daily life. The most common symptom for it involves memory loss which is especially noticed by spouse or anyone near and dear. Gradually this symptom starts affecting day-to-day activities. For example, the person may not be able to communicate properly, might often be lost in his or her thoughts, not able to plan his or her schedules efficiently. At times he or she may feel confused, agitated, or irritated. Also, the person has a tendency to fall easily while walking.

Older adults are most likely to be affected by dementia, as compared to the other age groups. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that 5–8% of trusted sources of people aged 60 or older have dementia.

Risk Factors

  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • Smoking
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Inappropriate diet
  • No physical activity

Other Modifiable Risk Factors Include

  • Nutritional deficiencies- Not drinking enough liquids (dehydration); not getting enough vitamin B1, which is common in people with chronic alcoholism; and not getting enough vitamins B6, B12 in your diet can cause dementia-like symptoms.
  • Subdural hematomas- common in the elderly after a fall, can cause symptoms similar to those of dementia.
  • Brain Tumors- Rarely, dementia can result from damage caused by a meningioma.
  • Normal-pressure Hydrocephalus- Caused by enlarged ventricles in the brain, can cause walking problems, urinary difficulty and memory loss.

Can Dementia Be Prevented?

Although dementia seems to be an age-related disease, the prevention of certain risk factors may slow down disease progression. Prevention includes taking a proper and healthy diet incorporating vitamin B6, vitamin B12, FOLATE. Also maintaining the levels of vitamin D in the body through food supplements and sun exposure is also advised.

The most important preventive measure includes keeping your mind active. Mental stimulating activities, such as reading, solving puzzles and playing word games, also help in delaying the onset of dementia or decreasing its effects. In addition to an active mind, physical and social activeness is very important to decrease the effect of dementia.

One should also take adequate sleep. Also, avoid excessive sugar or caffeine as it can disrupt your sleep.

Dementia Elder Care and In-Home Care Options

Caring for someone with dementia alone at home may become difficult to manage or sometimes impossible. If a time comes when you need help caring for your elderly loved one, help is available. Whether you just need a short break to focus on your well-being or are looking for more permanent support, find the right level of care for your loved one at Care4Parents.

In-home care services offer different levels of care depending on your loved one’s needs which may include:

  • Companionship
  • Help with transportation to appointments
  • Cleaning
  • Daily living activities such as bathing, dressing, and grooming
  • Medication management in a safe environment
  • Activities and therapies, like sensory stimulation, music therapy, and engagement stations to connect with residents.
  • 24-hour Nursing Services for medical assistance and supervision

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