Dealing with dementia

By Yalanda Young - bio | email feedback

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Every 70 seconds someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease. As a family member, it's hard to know how to cope.

Dr. Pippenger, a behavioral neurologist with St. Bernards Senior Health Clinic, says the first step is to gather as much information as possible.

"Family members need to know as much as they can about this disease and what treatments are available.  It's vital in being able to provide the best quality of life for a person that has been diagnosed with alzheimer's disease."

He says although it's our natural instinct to correct someone when they make a mistake, he says that's not a good idea when dealing with Alzheimer's patients.

"What we don't realize is that a person with Alzheimer's has forgotten that their father died so when we remind them of that, it's as if their father died all over again and they go through the entire grieving process all over again."

By making a few lifestyle changes, living with Dementia can be manageable.

"Simplifying the environment, taking away things that are unsafe, and trying to structure the environments so that the person with Alzheimer's is less likely to become upset or agitated."

For help dealing with this disease, you can get more information from the National Alzheimer's Association. Click Here.

For Community Resources in Region 8, Click Here.

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