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What Is Dementia?
Dementia is a loss of brain function that occurs with certain diseases. It affects memory, thinking, language, judgment, and behavior. Certain medical conditions can lead to dementia.
What Can Lead to Dementia?
The following are some medical conditions that can lead to dementia:
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Intoxication from medications (including over-the-counter drugs) and alcohol
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Severe depression
- Problems with the heart, lungs or blood vessels (such as strokes related to hypertension or one or more large strokes)
- Metabolic disorders (such as thyroid problems)
- Head injury
- Infection that infects the brain, causing permanent brain damage
- Deficiency in Vitamin B1 or B12
- Vision or hearing problems
How to Help Someone with Dementia
Caring for a person with dementia can be difficult. Here are some tips for caring for those with dementia:
- Don’t take negative behavior personally - When caring for a person with dementia, don’t take the person’s negative behavior personally. They may be struggling with something for themselves, and they may not intend to actually hurt you. Instead, try to avoid situations that could cause feelings of anxiety for that person.
- Encourage physical activity during the day - By encouraging and having someone with dementia engage in physical activity during the day, you can help to reduce wandering at night.
- Promote self-care by encouraging - Encourage a person with dementia to do any self-care activities that they are able to do.
- Provide planned activities - For a person with dementia, activities can quickly become frustrating if he or she is unable to complete them. So, plan activities that you feel they will be able to complete with the skills and abilities that you know they have.
- Repeat activities that the person with dementia enjoys - It is easy for a person with dementia to become frustrated when they are unable to do or complete an activity. So, when there is an activity that the person enjoys, keep doing it! It can help to reduce frustration and can promote positivity.
Caring for a Person with Dementia
Caring for someone with dementia can be difficult for you and him or her. It can be hard to not become disappointed when they become frustrated. You can use the tips above to help make your experience easier. If you need additional advice or help, reach out to us at McGregor PACE. We’re always happy to help!
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