St. Louis' Neurological Disorder Home Care Specialists
Helping St. Louis Area Families Cope with Neurological Disorders in the Elderly
Once a person hits the age of 65, the risk of neurological disorder goes up. Some of these conditions can truly be devastating to both the person who has developed the condition and the family members who love and care for that person.
Age can take a toll on a person’s mental health and there is not always a clear answer on treatment and what can be done to make your loved ones life a comfortable. Working with doctors and specialized home caregivers for the elderly, as well as doing research on your own can help you not only understand what is going on within the neurological system of your loved one, but may also help you cope with the condition at hand, especially if you are caring for your loved one at home.
Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia, but classified on its own. This is probably one of the most well known neurological disorders among the elderly and it can be very difficult for the family of the person with Alzheimer’s to deal with.
One thing that makes it so hard is that Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease and you will slowly have to watch your loved one succumb to it.
As time passes, the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, like memory loss, increase and when the disease enters the final stages, your loved one may be unable to interact with their environment and carry on with a conversation.
Keeping your loved one interacting with the family can really do great things when they are suffering from Alzheimer’s.
Knowing what to expect at each stage of the disease will go a long way in helping you handle each day as it comes along.
Though Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia, there are other types of dementia that can affect an elderly loved one that has nothing to do with Alzheimer’s.
Dementia isn’t a disease, but a symptom of a disease. Dementia is defined as a loss of brain function and as many as 1 in 7 elderly individuals over the age of 70 suffer from some form of dementia according to the Health and Retirement Study.
Not all dementia is the same and some forms can even be treated.
When caring for an elderly loved one at home who has a form of dementia, it is important to fully understand the type of dementia they have and make sure to offer plenty of enrichment activities.
Activities like hearing stories, listening to music and working on art projects have all shown great affects on those with dementia.
Caring for a loved one at home who has Parkinson’s disease can be more challenging than caring for a person with a form of dementia.
Parkinson’s is a neurological disorder that affects the physical movement of the person, not the mental abilities.
Typically Parkinson’s will start with a tremor in the hand and progressively spread to other parts of the body including the ability to control physical movements.
Even speech is often affected as time goes on. It is possible to have Parkinson’s for many years and never need medical assistance, so if you care caring for your loved one at home, make sure they are getting their independence which is important for their mental state.
There are some great treatments available to ease the symptoms of this neurological condition and regularly exercising with your loved one with Parkinson’s can really help.
Stroke is not only a condition that affects the elderly. A person of any age can be affected by a stroke. A stroke will occur when the blood supply to the brain is reduced or interrupted.
Since the brain needs a constant supply of blood, when it doesn’t get it, brain cells will begin to die.
When a brain cell dies, the body cannot replace them which can lead to neurological problems that can range from minor to severe.
There are some treatment methods available if your loved one has suffered a stroke and the home care needed for the victim of a stroke will depend on the severity of the stroke.
There is a greater chance of having a second stroke if a person has had a stroke previously.
Different types of therapy will have an excellent effect on people who have had strokes.
ALS stands for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and is commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. This is a serious disorder of the neurological system of the body which causes the muscles in the body to progressively weaken until it causes death.
Though about 5-10% of the cases of ALS are inherited, doctors and researchers do not know why others become afflicted with it.
ALS usually begins with a twitching or noticeable weakness in the legs or arms.
Eventually ALS will affect the muscles in your body and you will be unable to move, eat, speak or breathe.
Caring for a loved one with ALS can be challenging mentally and physically. There are several medications that seem to slow the progression of the loss of muscle control and new medications are being researched all the time.
Multiple sclerosis, known commonly as MS, is a neurological condition that causes the immune system in your body to attack the protective coatings that are part of the nerves.
When this coating is gone, normal communication between your body and brain cannot occur. Symptoms of MS vary greatly and there are differences in severity depending on the person who is afflicted.
Another interesting fact about multiple sclerosis is that it comes and goes.
Sometimes the symptoms can disappear for weeks or even months. Medications and other treatments can slow the progression of MS as well as treat the symptoms.
Many people believe that laughter can be an excellent method for dealing with MS. Keeping your loved one positive and happy will make all the difference in the world.
Spinal stenosis is a neurological disorder that causes nerve damage in your spine due to the narrowing of an area of the spine.
Almost all cases of spinal stenosis are caused by aging and depending on the nerves affected, symptoms can vary greatly.
Usually pain or numbness occurs in one of the limbs, back or shoulders.
Someone afflicted with spinal stenosis may have weakness in their limbs and may also have little or no control over their bowel or urinary functions.
Treatment methods for spinal stenosis include medications, including over the counter pain relievers, physical therapy, steroids and sometimes surgery. You may be able to eliminate the symptoms all together with these treatments.
Huntington’s disease is a neurological disease that is inherited. Huntington’s disease causes a progressive breakdown of nerves in the brain and leads to significant problems with physical movement, the cognitive thought process and can even cause psychiatric disorders.
Most people become diagnosed with Huntington’s disease in their 40s or 50s, but it can begin showing itself sooner.
There are a multitude of symptoms when it comes to Huntington’s disease from involuntary movements of the body and difficulty with speech to being unaware of the actions they are performing and severe lack of focus.
There are medications that will be able to slow the affects of Huntington’s and research is going on right now that is promising on treating some of the Huntington’s symptoms.
In turn, you’ll be able to focus on what you do best and what
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