dementia

Understanding the Progression of Alzheimer’s

Senior with caregiver
With Alzheimer’s disease now afflicting more than 5 million Americans, most people are familiar with the common characteristics of the disease which can begin as mild forgetfulness and progress to more serious symptoms such as difficulty with thinking, loss of language skills, mental confusion and severe memory loss. But a good deal of misunderstanding about the disease persists, including what...
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Behavior Changes May Be an Early Indicator of Alzheimer’s

Senior and son on path
The onset of Alzheimer’s disease is typically characterized as increasing memory loss, growing forgetfulness, and difficulty with concentration and reasoning. While many people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease do exhibit these symptoms, some people present changes in personality or behavior before any memory-related issues are evident. Researchers from the University of Calgary in Can...
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Alzheimer’s and Animal-Assisted Therapy

Comfort Dogs at Monroe
Alzheimer’s and Animal-Assisted Therapy Anyone who owns a pet knows the value of that relationship.  Pets offer companionship and love, and even lower blood pressure and heart rate.  Increasingly, there are many studies that show how important the person-animal relationship can be for people living with Alzheimer’s. When Alzheimer’s patients spend time with animals (dogs, cats, fish, birds...
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Alzheimer’s and The Importance of Reminiscing

Memories Board at Holmdel
Someone with Alzheimer’s may forget a discussion from a few minutes earlier, yet recall an entire conversation from 50 years ago.  This is because the disease effects the short-term memory first.  The result is difficulty in everyday communication. For people with Alzheimer’s, their inability to communicate effectively has a ripple effect on their lives.  They begin to feel disconnected fro...
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I want my mom to have a good quality of life.

Lady-with-Rose_Small
These are the words I most often hear when family members bring their loved ones to Millennium Memory Care. When Covid-19 started to spread throughout the U.S. in early March, Millennium Memory Care (MMC) was one of the few communities that limited non-essential visitations, provided all employees with PPE, and required them to wear N95 masks. This was weeks before the State of NJ mandated such ac...
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Your Brain: Use It or Lose It

Senior Woman Reading Book
It might make intuitive sense that the more you use your brain – engaging in activities like problem-solving and complex learning – the better it will continue to function as you age. We tend to think of exercising the brain in the same way as physical exercise: the less physically or mentally active you are, the more strength and ability is lost. In other words: use it or lose it. This idea, l...
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Visiting a Person with Alzheimer’s

diagnosing alzheinmer's
Visiting someone with Alzheimer’s is an importance aspect of their care and overall well-being.  Even if they are otherwise healthy and all their medical needs are being met, don’t underestimate the power of a personal visit.  As with most aspects of Alzheimer’s, it isn’t the memory of the visit that they will value, but the feelings and emotions that are conveyed and expressed. When visiting s...
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Exercise for a Healthy Brain

Senior Couple with Weights
Everyone knows how important it is to be physically active. Some of the many physical benefits of regular exercise include improved strength, flexibility, stamina, balance and coordination. Exercise can also help with managing weight and controlling risk factors for chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol and stroke. On the other hand, lack of activity can have seriou...
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Challenges with Challenging Behaviors  

Lonely senior man feeling very sad
Dementia care is becoming ever more needed in an increasing variety of settings including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, boarding homes, rehab centers and of course, in the homes of friends and neighbors. It is crucial to understand what the best care setting is for someone with behavioral dementia. In my support groups, I frequently meet caregivers who ask this very question. Many ...
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Can Improving Hearing Impact Cognitive Health?

Hearing and Memory Loss
A slow loss of hearing ability is generally viewed as a normal and accepted part of aging. It is an unfortunate reality many of us will face as we get older. About two-thirds of Americans experience some hearing loss by the time they reach their 70s. It is perceived to be so inevitable that many do not seek any treatment or remedy for hearing loss. In fact, less than 15-20 percent of people diagno...
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