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Understanding Alzheimer’s

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There is no face to Alzheimer’s

In 2015 alone, nearly five million individuals were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Many view Alzheimer’s as a debilitating disease that leaves the affected unable to live their daily lives but this doesn’t have to be the case. Despite the immense turmoil you may feel, take the initiative with First Opinion to better understand that the ones you love are still themselves and need your love more than ever before.

The first thing to understand is that there is no cure to Alzheimer’s. You cannot fix the individual affected with this disease; the sooner you realize this, the more manageable your expectations for your relationship and interactions will be. The key to every great relationship is communication… this remains true when discussing a relationship with someone affected by Alzheimer’s.

Be prepared to give short, concise and repetitive conversations. Don’t expect to have long and in depth conversations; it simply isn’t possible anymore. Don’t  ever become frustrated or angry, this is a waste of time and energy.

Enjoy the simple things

A great way to spend time together is through simple activities such as cooking a recipe together, go for a walk, or do a puzzle. These may seem childish, but you have to remember the reality of their situation.

The most crucial aspect of your relationship with someone afflicted with Alzheimer’s is listening. Many times individuals with Alzheimer’s will become lost in their words. You should try to listen and react to their body language, as this will not only help the individual communicate more effectively, but also be a preventative measure against hostile and aggressive behavior sometimes displayed in Alzheimer’s patients. If you should deal with an aggressive and sudden outburst, remain calm; don’t take the offense just listen and give simple answers.

Keep your doctor in the loop…

We understand how an incredibly difficult it is when a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Each case is unique and the best thing you can do is connect with a doctor to discuss the specifics of your situation. Talk to your doctor about how to make the most out of a difficult situation with your loved one and their battle with Alzheimer’s.

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