In the developed world, many nations are experiencing a growth in their elderly population, those aged 65 and over. Improving medicine and quality of life are contributing to this trend, and this means that related industries such as assisted living and nursing homes are growing, too. The American elderly population is on the rise as Baby Boomers reach age 65 and over, and in some parts of the world, this trend is even more pronounced. Japan leads the world in life expectancy for both men and women, and that nation has a rapidly growing elderly population. Estimates say that by the year 2040 to 2050, one in four Japanese will be aged 65 and over, meaning that the elder care industry there must find a way to keep up. This trend isn’t quite as pronounced in Europe and North America, but it is present, and this also means that medicine and care for senior citizens must be ready.
In the United Stats, many Americans aged 65 and over have a chronic condition, and some of them have more than one at once. Some conditions are more physical, such as osteoporosis (most common among elderly women), or heart conditions or high blood pressure. Mental conditions such as dementia and Alzhemiers are also common, and there are statistics to track the American population suffering from dementia. What can be done for a patient with Alzhemiers? It may depend, based on how advanced the condition is for a given patient.
This condition mainly affects those aged 65, and only rarely will early-onset Alzhemiers present in a person under 65. Today, around five million Americans have Alzhemiers Disease, and that number may reach 16 million or so by the year 2050, according to some estimates. This condition mainly affects the elderly, and two in three Alzhemiers patients are women. One in eight Americans aged 65 and over, in short, have this neurological degenerative condition. Unfortunately, Alzhemiers cannot be prevented or cured, and the disease will impair the patient’s memory and even affect their physical motor skills. Alzhemiers patients are known for becoming clumsy over time as well as their memory issues, meaning that many Alzhemiers patients need special care. The level of care may be based on how advanced at patient’s case is.
Home care is possible for Alzhemiers patients whose condition is still developing. Such patients will live in their own residence and are largely independent, but they may have home assistants and nurses visit them regularly. Such professionals may provide medicine and checkups, and they can help with household work ranging from grocery shopping to household cleaning to caring for pets or a garden. And although Alzhemiers cannot be cured, its advance may be slowed down when the patient gets enough creative mental stimulation such as a strong social life and logic puzzles. Even something as simple as good friendship and doing jigsaw puzzles can slow down the condition to some degree and make the patient happier and more mentally engaged.
The house should be made safe and convenient for the patient. Tripping hazards such as rugs or cords should be moved, and bladed or flame-producing items should be locked away so the patient cannot suffer injury or start a house fire. Furniture may be arranged in logical and consistent ways with little change to help minimize the impact of memory loss, too. And if the patient ever goes outside, he or she should wear a name tag with their address and their assistants’ contact information. This may be useful if the patient becomes lost or hurt, so anyone who finds them can help get them back home.
In more advanced cases, it may be inconvenient or even risky for the Alzemiers patient to keep living at home, so friends and family may help them look up a proper nursing home with 24 hour care in it. Such facilities may be closer to the patient’s family for ease of visiting, and these homes have skilled nurses on hand and constant access to nearby medical care if need be. The patient may also appreciate a strong social life there and the access to good medical care. This can even save a life in case of a medical emergency.