Caring For The Vulnerable During The Outbreak

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As of today, we remain worried and devastated because of the continuous spread of the coronavirus across the world. Leaders and healthcare professionals remind us at all times that the way to thrive through this virus is not to get it in the first place. If, unfortunately, you were infected, the best way to reduce the spread is by protecting others from you. Stores and shops will be sacrificed, as there will be no ‘business as usual.’ Finally, everyone must do their share in practicing social distancing and proper hygiene.

Protecting Alzheimer’s Patients From The Pandemic

As we strive to safeguard each other, we must also pay extra attention to keeping our elderly, especially those with Alzheimer’s disease, healthy and safe. The infection per se does not result from dementia, but it increases the likelihood of them getting contaminated and for having more life-threatening conditions.

Cognitive Disabilities Increase The Risk Of Spread

Impairments in cognition hinder some parts of self-protection. Older people with Alzheimer’s disease may lack an understanding of the factors that cause the infection or may not be as careful as needed. This is why they are one of the targets for coronavirus. Proper handwashing will be difficult for them as well, as they are often forgetful and temperamental. Additionally, it’s hard to teach him social distancing guidelines since most of the elderly anticipate the younger ones to give them a hug and a kiss.

Woman with Headache

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Awareness of the signs of symptoms is another threat to be mindful of. An individual who has a diminished sense of self may not be able to see that a fever or cough is a possibility that she may be infected, or she may even forget to mention to you that she is not feeling very well. We need to be sure of our utmost care for the long-term elderly facilities where they are frequently interacting with other older people who are asymptomatic or symptomatic carriers. A frustrating fact about COVID-19 is that people who are already infected can spread the infection days before they show symptoms.

The Elderly Are More Susceptible To Severe Conditions

Once they are contaminated, the elderly with dementia are sadly susceptible to developing more severe conditions. Although most coronavirus contaminations are not life-threatening, no one has accurate details of the death cases related to the diseases. However, all of us are aware that older adults with conditions like diabetes, heart diseases, and other moderate to severe medical conditions are more at risk than the younger population. Moreover, as our age advances, our immune systems become less able to fight against infections.

Protecting Elderly People With Dementia

In relation to this, are there some things we can do to help protect our elders with Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease? First and foremost, we must help minimize their exposure to the virus.

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An individual with Alzheimer’s disease, at this time, must not be exposed to unnecessary gatherings, visitors, and specifically to public transportation even if they have not been showing symptoms. Most of them are taken care of in their own homes by their family and significant others. Their caregivers should be extra cautious about their safety as well, so they too should practice proper handwashing, disinfecting areas that people often stay, and self-isolation if needed.

Today is a great time to check on your stocks of medication and purchase what’s lacking, list what you need to buy for two or three months and go to the supermarket to complete the list, and finally stay at home where you are safe, unexposed, and healthy. The younger generation is responsible for protecting and taking care of our vulnerable loved ones, such as those with Alzheimer’s disease. Our top priority for them and us should be preventing contamination.

 

 

Stimulating The Minds Of Alzheimer’s Patients

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Going to the 2017 Alzheimer’s Conference is one of the requirements that our hospital asks new employees. It was my first time attending one, so I had no expectations at all. Still, I thought that there would be presentations about Alzheimer’s prevention and care for the caregivers.

I was mildly surprised by the fact that the speakers talked about life after an Alzheimer’s diagnosis. In truth, even though I had been in the medical field for a few years now, I had never thought about it. I was aware of the struggles that the patients faced, for sure. But I did not know about how they could manage the illness. Therefore, it amazed me to know that there were a few activities that could stimulate their brains and keep them from deteriorating too much too fast.

Put Household Items In Order
One of the most natural things that Alzheimer’s patients can do is organize their belongings at home. For instance, you can stock the boxes of soap in the bathroom, line up the perfumes in the cabinet, or organize clothes according to colors or seasons. Such tasks will not exhaust them mentally, but it will help them stay busy for a few hours every day. Thus, they may not think of going out without supervision.

Give Them Books
Any aging individual, whether diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or not, need to sharpen their memory. And what is a better way to do it than to give them books and other reading materials? Make sure that reading is a part of their daily routine and that they do it for at least an hour. That’s how you can ensure that the disease’s progression won’t speed up.

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Introduce Arts
It is never too late for anyone to be artistic or tap into their creative skills. There is no specific form of art that Alzheimer’s patients should try; they can pick whatever they want. E.g., painting, knitting, drawing, etc. What matters is that their brain keeps on working and that their output gives them a sense of accomplishment.

Final Thoughts
Alzheimer’s disease still has no cure at the time of writing this blog. However, the patients’ condition might change for the better if you continue encouraging them to use their cognitive skills.