Dementia Caregivers Benefit From Professional Help At Home

Although scores of older adults are dealing with the challenges of Alzheimer’s disease, a far greater number of family dementia caregivers are struggling to care for them. Surprisingly, nearly 75% of caregivers are caring for a loved one with dementia by themselves, with only 26% reaching out for professional care services.

Naturally, families want to do all they possibly can to fulfill their loved ones’ needs, but dementia caregiving can bring about an incredibly high level of both mental and physical stress. This takes a toll on the caretakers’ own health and wellness in the long run, especially once the disease progresses. And a lot of family dementia caregivers think there’s an all-or-nothing strategy: either oversee their loved one’s needs in the home, or confront moving the senior into residential care.

Montebello Home Care, fortunately, has an alternative that is good for seniors with dementia in addition to their family caregivers: a knowledgeable in-home dementia caregiver to give as much or as little respite care as necessary. Here is why we believe that professional dementia caregivers in the home are best:

  • Highly skilled care. Because our caregivers are both trained and experienced in the many intricate aspects of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, they are in a position to proactively cope with and more easily manage even the most challenging of behaviors, like wandering, aggression, sundowning, and much more.
  • Improved safety. The possibility of accidents is heightened for those with dementia. Even something that appears as uncomplicated as helping your senior loved one into the shower or onto the toilet can add a dangerous fall risk. Professional care providers know exactly how to watch out for and avoid falls, keeping both you and your family member safe from injury.
  • Sustainable aging in place. Oftentimes, family caregivers become so stressed with wanting to meet every one of a senior loved one’s needs in tandem with their own that a transfer to a residential dementia care facility appears inevitable. However, working with a professional dementia caregiver opens up the possibility of long-term, effective care at home.
  • Peace of mind. Knowing your loved one is in competent hands means that you can take a breath, relax, and step away from the challenges of caregiving for the essential breaks that decrease stress along with the prospect of caregiver burnout and depression.

It is a good idea to investigate home care as early into a loved one’s dementia diagnosis as you can, to allow for a more seamless transition and to be sure that your loved one has the most beneficial care from the very beginning. Contact us at 409-276-7576 to ask about a consultation in the comfort of home, where we can design a highly customized plan for caring with a loved one with dementia to improve his or her quality of life. If you need a caregiver in Beaumont or if you are looking to learn more about our services for home health in Beaumont, Texas and the surrounding communities we serve, please visit our Service Area page.

What You Need to Know About the Current Treatment Options for Alzheimer’s

The most up-to-date Alzheimer’s statistics are worrying. The illness has become the sixth leading cause of death, overtaking both breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. And even though deaths from several chronic conditions, like cardiovascular illnesses, are decreasing, those from Alzheimer’s have increased in excess of 100%. The toll the disease takes on family caregivers is equally astonishing, with over 16 million Americans delivering over 18 billion hours of caregiving for a loved one with Alzheimer’s.

Though we have yet to find an end to Alzheimer’s disease, there are a couple of distinct kinds of treatment options for Alzheimer’s that may help ease a few of the more prevalent symptoms. If your parent is identified as having Alzheimer’s, there are a few options your doctor may propose:

  1. Cholinesterase inhibitors: By blocking the breakdown of acetylcholine, a chemical required for memory, attention, learning and muscle activity, these treatments can offer some benefit in the mild to moderate stages of Alzheimer’s for many patients. Dr. Zaldy Tan, medical director of the UCLA Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Program, cautions, however, to be aware that results are going to be modest at best. “The best-case scenario is that the patient’s memory and cognitive function may improve slightly to what it was six months to a year ago – it’s not going to turn back time,” he makes clear. Included in this class of medications are galantamine (Razadyne), donepezil (Aricept) and rivastigmine (Exelon).
  2. Memantine: In the moderate to severe periods of the disease, the physician may recommend memantine (Namenda), which takes a unique approach in comparison to cholinesterase inhibitors, preventing the overstimulation of glutamate NMDA receptors which in turn often helps regain limited memory functionality. Doctors will frequently add memantine to a patient’s care plan combined with a cholinesterase inhibitor when the disease progresses.

Determining the effectiveness of these treatments calls for patience, as both take 4 – 6 weeks before benefits may be realized. And, it is imperative to weigh the benefits versus any adverse side effects, which may involve confusion and constipation in memantine, and nausea, vomiting and a reduced heart rate with cholinesterase inhibitors.

One of the most effective ways to support individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in living life to the fullest is by employing the services of a specially trained dementia caregiver who understands the disease and who will help manage the varied struggles of dementia. Contact Montebello Home Care for more information about our highly trained, compassionate Alzheimer’s care services for seniors and to learn more about our memory care in Orange and the surrounding areas.