If you’re a family caregiver for an elderly loved one, it’s important to be familiar with the potential risk factors for conditions that can affect seniors, such as Alzheimer’s disease. While the causes of Alzheimer’s are unknown, research suggests a correlation between certain lifestyle factors and the development of the condition. Here are some risk factors that can influence the onset of Alzheimer’s.
1. Being Female
While scientists aren’t yet sure why, Alzheimer’s disease primarily affects women. As a result, it’s important for family caregivers to be particularly attentive to changes in the behavior of elderly female relatives.
2. Displaying Antisocial Behavior
Though some seniors are naturally less social, it’s important for even introverted seniors to take time to socialize with friends and family. Since being social can also offer other benefits, such as cognitive stimulation and positive feelings of belonging and contentment, socializing can be a good activity for all seniors who want to stave off Alzheimer’s.
Hiring a home caregiver can be a wonderful solution if your loved one needs regular companionship and socialization. Senior care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy
3. Having a Family History
Recent research suggests family history is a big factor in determining a senior’s chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease. People can’t change their genes, but those who have family histories of Alzheimer’s should keep an eye out for the early warning signs. If your loved one’s family has a genetic history of Alzheimer’s, it’s important for you and your loved one to watch for symptoms of cognitive decline and memory loss. Seniors with Alzheimer’s who are diagnosed early are often able to minimize some of the worst symptoms. There are also some experimental drugs and therapies that seem to help those who have mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. If your loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, he or she may benefit from receiving specialized home care.
4. Sustaining a Major Head Injury
Severe head injuries, including concussions and other types of head trauma, are also a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. While your loved one may have had this type of injury many years ago, if you know he or she has experienced a concussion, make sure to share that information with his or her physician.
To minimize the risk of falls that can result in dangerous head injuries, seniors who have strength or balance issues should speak with their doctors about using mobility devices, such as walkers and canes. If your loved one falls, he or she must immediately schedule an appointment with a doctor for a comprehensive checkup that includes a head MRI.
If you’re concerned about minimizing your loved one’s risk for Alzheimer’s disease, consider hiring a professional caregiver. Colorado Springs in-home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
5. Living a Sedentary Lifestyle
As with many diseases and conditions affecting the elderly, leading an inactive lifestyle can increase the chances of Alzheimer’s disease. To help your loved one reduce the risk of this condition, encourage him or her to be as active as possible. Doing little things like taking a short walk once a day can make a big difference in your loved one’s physical condition.
Without the right assistance, Alzheimer’s can be challenging for seniors and their families to manage. If you’re looking for professional Alzheimer’s care, Colorado Springs Home Care Assistance provides high-quality care aging adults and their families can count on. All of our hourly and live-in caregivers are trained to help seniors with Alzheimer’s live happier and healthier lives, and we also provide specialized dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. For reliable in-home care services, contact us at (719) 822-1229