No one likes to think about a family member being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Fear can make people avoid being checked even when symptoms become clear. While being diagnosed may be life changing, getting an early diagnosis can positively impact the patient’s life with Alzheimer’s disease and improve the caregiving experience for family members. Below are 6 reasons to get an early diagnosis.
1. Sometimes Symptoms are Reversible.
Some symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease can be caused by other conditions. Depending on the condition, cognitive symptoms may even be reversible. Even if the older adult is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, there may be some underlying conditions that can be treated to improve their cognitive abilities.
2. Chance to Make Changes.
There are some lifestyle changes that can improve the overall health of the senior. Some can even help slow the decline of cognitive function. Some lifestyle changes that can help are eating a healthy diet, exercising, quitting smoking, and keeping blood pressure under control.
3. Earlier Treatment May Be More Effective.
As with many diseases, treatment of Alzheimer’s is most effective when it begins as early on in the progression of the disease as possible. In addition, the diagnosis itself is more likely to be accurate since the older adult will be better able to answer questions and provide a full medical history.
4. Opportunity to Maximize Time.
Knowing about an Alzheimer’s diagnosis earlier gives the senior and their family a chance to spend more quality time together before the disease progresses. You’ll have time to do things like record family stories or go on that once-in-a-lifetime vacation the senior has always dreamed of. And, knowing the cause of cognitive changes may alleviate some worries and help everyone to feel less anxious.
5. Save Money.
Money may not be your first concern when you discover someone in your family has Alzheimer’s disease. However, the reality is that Alzheimer’s disease is a costly condition to treat and manage. According to a report titled the 2018 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures, if all estimated cases of Alzheimer’s disease among people living today were diagnosed during the early stages, it would save approximately $7 trillion in health and long-term care.
6. Time to Plan for Care.
As time passes, the senior will need more and more care. An early diagnosis gives them time to make their wishes for future care known. It also gives family members time to talk about how they will achieve care as the needs increase. One way to help handle care needs is to hire senior care. Senior care providers can fill in times on the care calendar when family caregivers are not available, even if the hours are overnight. Senior care providers can keep the person safe, happy, and as healthy as possible. In addition to personal care for the older adult, senior care can also assist with keeping the home clean, preparing meals, and doing laundry.
If you or an aging family member are considering professional senior care in Massapequa, NY, please call the caring staff at A Gentle Touch Senior Home and Health Care at 631-647-7622 today.