The changes that occur in the brain due to dementia cannot be reversed. For years, nothing much could be done about dementia, but seniors are now able to benefit from treatments that have the potential to help them enjoy a better quality of life. Some types of dementia respond well to medications that can slow damage to brain cells. Other types require families to focus on providing more natural courses of treatment that include exercise, special diets, and cognitive activities. Leaving dementia untreated can have dire consequences for seniors, including these potential issues.
Treatment for dementia is mostly aimed at slowing the progression of a person’s cognitive decline. Dementia is best known for affecting memory, but the changes your senior loved one experiences can also impact other abilities. Seniors who don’t receive treatment may lose their ability to communicate, chew their food, and regulate their behavior. Getting your loved one help now could preserve the abilities he or she has left.
If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elder care families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
Experiencing Preventable Injuries
As your loved one’s abilities decrease, he or she is also more likely to make poor judgment calls that could cause him or her to get hurt. Your loved one may decide to tackle a household task that’s more than he or she can handle, which could lead to a nasty cut or fall. Seniors with rapidly progressing dementia might eat spoiled food or drink chemical cleaners they mistake for beverages. Keeping someone near your loved one can prevent him or her from getting hurt.
Dementia can be challenging for seniors to manage, but they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional dementia care. Oshkosh seniors can benefit greatly from the Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program designed to promote cognitive health and delay the onset of dementia. CTM is included at no additional charge with any of the in-home care plans provided by Home Care Assistance.
Becoming a Target for Crime
Seniors should be safe in their homes, but this isn’t always the case. Abusers can identify seniors with untreated dementia due to their clear vulnerability. A friend of the family may scam a senior into giving him or her money. A frustrated caregiver could neglect or abuse a senior with dementia. Strengthening your loved one’s ability to think clearly can help him or her identify scammers and know when to tell you or a professional caregiver when something seems wrong.
Failing to Maintain Close Relationships
Seniors with untreated dementia are more likely to experience social isolation that threatens their mental health. Without someone to talk to, seniors often experience changes in their ability to communicate. Some older adults may also lose their motivation to take care of their personal hygiene. Planning social activities can slow the progression of memory loss while preserving your loved one’s ability to connect with other people.
Hurting Someone Else
Your loved one might be the last person you’d ever expect to hurt anyone. Yet someone with dementia who isn’t being treated may make rash decisions that affect others. For instance, your loved one may get behind the wheel of a car and cause a collision or accidentally start a house fire when other people are in the home. Provide your loved one with strategies that minimize this risk. For instance, some seniors may need caregivers to take them to dementia care appointments so they can take care of their cognitive health and avoid hurting anyone else.
There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional at-home care. Oshkosh families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place. Trust your loved one’s care to the professionals at Home Care Assistance. Reach out to one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (920) 573-6295.