Though the risk of Alzheimer’s can be reduced by consuming omega-3 fatty acids, exercising regularly, and stimulating the brain, it’s not always possible to prevent this disease. Cognitive decline in seniors with Alzheimer’s normally progresses from mild memory loss to complete lack of cognition.
Caring for senior loved ones can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
To help seniors and their family caregivers understand Alzheimer’s better, Dr. Barry Reisberg at New York University has divided the progression of the disease into 7 stages.
1. No Impairment
At this stage, no symptoms are occurring, and the disease isn’t detectable. However, Alzheimer’s has already begun to alter the cells in the brain that will eventually cause complications.
2. Very Mild Cognitive Decline
It’s very rare for Alzheimer’s to be detected at this stage. A senior may forget things briefly, but the loss of memory is rare and temporary. During this phase, your loved one may forget simple things such as where the car keys are. Neither you nor your loved one should be concerned at this stage.
3. Mild Cognitive Decline
As the disease progresses, your loved one may have difficulty remembering new acquaintances or directions, planning or organizing complicated tasks, and keeping track of valuables. At this point, a doctor will be able to diagnose Alzheimer’s due to impaired performance on memory and cognitive tests.
4. Moderate Cognitive Decline
Around Stage 4, the memory loss will become evident. Your loved one may not be able to remember events that occurred just hours before, and he or she may also forget details about the more distant past. Basic mental activities such as doing arithmetic or managing the bills may no longer be possible.
5. Moderately Severe Cognitive Decline
Though seniors in this stage may still remember some details about their family members and past events, they may forget specifics like their phone numbers or ages. They might face difficulty with dressing or feeding themselves but can still use the restroom independently. Stage 5 is signified by regular episodes of confusion throughout the day.
There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Home Care Assistance is a leading Rocklin home care service provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life.
6. Severe Cognitive Decline
During the 6th stage of Alzheimer’s, seniors will be confused for the majority of the day. They will likely need assistance with daily tasks, such as using the toilet. Their personalities may become unrecognizable, and certain behavioral problems can occur. At this point, they may not recognize most of their relatives and friends. Seniors with Stage 6 Alzheimer’s may wander off and get lost.
7. Very Severe Cognitive Decline
In the final stage, seniors with Alzheimer’s lose their ability to communicate lucidly. They may be completely unaware of their surroundings and need help at all hours of the day. At this point, professional Alzheimer’s care is usually required because seniors may not even be able to swallow food on their own.
If your elderly loved one is living with Alzheimer’s and needs help managing the symptoms, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of Alzheimer’s care. Rocklin seniors can rely on our revolutionary Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program that promotes cognitive health and delays the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. CTM also encourages seniors to engage with others in an enjoyable way and helps them build new routines to look forward to. To hire a professionally trained caregiver for your loved one, call us at (916) 226-3737 today.