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If you have a loved one suffering from a neurological condition like Alzheimer’s disease, taking care of them can be mentally, emotionally and physically overwhelming at times. Alzheimer's disease is one of the most common types of dementia, a condition marked by the progressive loss of memory and it can be so severe that the patients may even fail to recognize their family members and friends at some point. The disease was named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer, who discovered the disease in 1906. Experts from the best neurology Hospital in Pune suggest that Alzheimer's happens to be the most common cause of dementia in elderly people.

Depending upon the onset of the symptoms, Alzheimer’s is broadly classified into two different types - early-onset Alzheimer’s and late-onset Alzheimer’s. Patients with the former tend to experience the symptoms when they are in their 30s, whereas the latter start noticing the symptoms after the age of 60.

Looking after someone suffering from Alzheimer’s is full of challenges, as you have to remember things on their part as well, take care of their medication and make sure they are safe. There are millions of families across the globe, who are tending to the needs of a loved one with Alzheimer’s, ensuring a better quality of life for them.

Taking care of someone in the early stage of Alzheimer’s

The patient does not need any major help during the initial stage of the diagnosis and the major focus should be on helping them get to terms with the fact that they have been diagnosed with the disease that is going to change their life in the coming years.

  • Acceptance is the key and no matter how difficult it is, you have to be strong. Take your time to process the news, but make sure you seek timely medical intervention. Don't let your grief get in the way of the treatment.
  • Face your emotions - The diagnosis can set you on an emotional roller coaster and different people have different ways of dealing with it. While some stick to denial or grief, others may experience anger and frustration. All these are natural, but you do have to give in to these emotions. Try to vent out your feelings, whatever way you want. The best way to do it is to confide in a loved one.
  • Utilize the available resources - There is a lot of information related to Alzheimer's available online. Don't just sit and think "What if", rather research about the disease online, using reliable sources. Reach out to people who have been dealing with the same and try to learn about their experience.
  • Plan the journey - Don't just wait for things to happen and plan your journey beforehand. As the condition progresses, it is going to be more difficult for you to manage the patient. Being ready for any upcoming challenge will make it easier for you to go about it.

Making their life easier

The symptoms of Alzheimer’s tend to worsen with time and as such there are two things that you can do to help the patients.

  • Firstly, you can focus on slowing down the progression of the disease - Fortunately, there are some treatments that can help to effectively slow down the progression of the symptoms, however, these alone cannot help to slow down the overall progression of the disease. You can combine these with simple lifestyle changes and healthy habits related to your lifestyle, diet, stress management and activity level. The patient might find it difficult to make these changes on their own and you can help them with the same. By preparing healthy meals, going out on walks with them, encouraging them to increase their activity level or lightening up their mood.
  • Secondly, you can help with gradual memory loss - As time passes by, it becomes more and more difficult for the patient to carry out normal day-to-day functions on their own. Your responsibilities are going to increase with each passing day and hence it is important to set reminders and note down all the important things related to them, like their medications, appointments, grocery, passwords, etc.

These tips will surely make it a little easier for you to take care of your loved ones with Alzheimer’s. While you are doing so, make sure that you prioritize your well-being as well. Go for a counselling session and never hesitate from asking for help. Consult the experts from the best hospital in Thane for any assistance or help.