It can be extremely surprising to find out that your aging parent is dealing with Alzheimer’s disease. You may have noticed a few changes in their behavior or they might have complained that their memory doesn’t seem as strong or their thoughts don’t seem as clear. Learning that they are living with a progressive disease that has affected their brain and will continue to do so, can seem too serious considering the symptoms that they are showing.
The truth, however, is that Alzheimer’s disease does not actually start when the symptoms appear. Instead, there is another aspect of the disease that is not considered one of the formal stages of Alzheimer’s but is an important step in what will be an ongoing feature of your parent’s life throughout their later years.
What are some of these changes?
The changes that occur in the brain that are characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease actually begin long before the symptoms appear. This is because the changes in the brain, including the cell death that will eventually lead to your parent’s most significant challenges and needs, take time to develop to a degree that is sufficient to cause these symptoms. In fact, this period of time, which is referred to as preclinical Alzheimer’s disease, can last for several years.
This illustrates the importance of your parent taking care of their brain and their health at all times. By the time that they start showing the symptoms of the disease, the damage to their brain has already started and will only progress from there.
What can you do?
Talk to their doctor about ways that you can help your parent to protect their physical and cognitive health as they age. These can include eating a healthy diet, getting enough exercise, staying physically and mentally active, and maintaining social interaction. Starting senior care for your parent can be an exceptional way to support your efforts and help you to accomplish these goals.
If you have recently learned that your aging parent is living with Alzheimer’s disease, or they have been progressing through the stages and their challenges have increased, now may be the ideal time for you to consider starting elder care for them.
How can elder care help?
An elder care services provider can be with your aging parent on a customized schedule to ensure that they get all of the care, support, and assistance they need to handle their challenges and needs now and prepare them for their continued progression into the future. As their family caregiver, this can give you tremendous peace of mind and confidence that your senior is getting everything they need both when you are able to be with them and when you are not so they can enjoy the most active, fulfilling, and healthy quality of life possible as they age in place.
Are you or a loved one considering elder care in Sherwood, AR? First Choice Senior Care can help.
Call and talk to our caring staff today. (501) 916-9307
Kayla believes in advocating for and educating seniors and their families on a variety of topics and issues that impact them.Reflecting on the need for an independent home care provider interested in quality over quantity, she chased her dream of building her own company that would make a significant difference in the lives of seniors, providing a much-needed service in her own local community.
Kayla holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Arkansas State University, is licensed by the state of Arkansas as a Long-Term Care Administrator, and is a Certified Senior Adviser.