The nature of Alzheimer disease continues to be a scientific puzzle. And what science has discovered is baffling.
One thing we now know is that there is a strong relationship between brain health and heart health. What you and your parents do to protect your heart will also protect your brain.
Here’s another mystery: Alzheimer is typically diagnosed with a brain scan that shows neurofibrillary tangles. But some people with these tangles show no symptoms of Alzheimer’s.
Science also tells us that only one percent of Alzheimer’s patients have the dominant genetic marker that makes this disease inevitable. Yes, you read that right. That means that 99 percent of us have the ability to dodge Alzheimer’s.
This new research is great news for your parents or grandparents! But what can your beloved elder do to prevent Alzheimer’s? And how can you help them make the positive changes that can keep them in good mental health? Here are three key elements in warding off Alzheimer’s disease:
1. Avoid head injuries
There is a strong correlation between direct blows to the brain and Alzheimer’s. Unless your senior has taken up boxing, these injuries are most likely to result from a fall. And falls that result in unconsciousness are the most dangerous.
To prevent falls, be sure your senior’s space is free from clutter, including throw rugs, boxes, floor appliances, and other tripping hazards. Tall pieces of furniture, like bookcases, should be bolted to the wall.
Elder care professionals can help you identify fall risks in your senior’s home and also evaluate your senior’s balance to see if he needs a cane or walker. A home care expert can tell you whether your senior needs to wear a helmet when performing some activities.
2. Keep exercising
Exercise is also a factor in preventing Alzheimer’s because it protects the heart. Walking, water aerobics, and light strength training with weights or rubber bands are among the exercises most beneficial and lowest risk for people over 65.
If you are worried that your senior might fall or get lost while on a walk, elder care professionals can be a huge help. They will be delighted to accompany your senior on walks and be available to break a fall. Home care professionals can encourage and supervise other types of therapeutic exercise as well.
3. Eat a Mediterranean diet
The Mediterranean diet, so called because it is the diet of people in southern Spain and Italy, is recommended for heart health. This diet is rich in lean proteins, especially fish, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, olive oil instead of butter, and wine in moderation.
Dietary needs change as we age. That means your senior may need fewer calories than he did before. Home care professionals can help you ensure your parents are eating heart-healthy meals. These professionals shop for the right foods, prepare meals, and help clean up. And that makes it much easier for an elder to eat right.
In conclusion, Alzheimer’s is nowhere near as inevitable as caregivers once believed. By exercising, eating right, and avoiding head injuries, your loved one may enjoy good mental health well into his or her nineties.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering Home Care in Carthage, MO please contact the caring staff at Adelmo Family Care today at (417) 206-4576.
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