Imagine waking up in the morning in a dark room with very little light. As you get out of bed your joints are stiff, your vision is blurred. While you are getting ready for the day you go to the bathroom to brush your teeth but you can’t remember where you keep your toothbrush. At breakfast you see your friend, Sue, and you wish her a happy birthday but she reminds you that her birthday was last week. These are just some of the tasks that people with dementia struggle with on a daily basis.
Alzheimer’s disease, a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking, and behavior, affects more than 5 million Americans. Often the first sign of Alzheimer’s is the inability to remember newly learned information. Symptoms of Alzheimer’s usually develop slowly and gradually worsen, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.
The majority of people with Alzheimer’s are 65 and older, but up to 5 percent of people with the disease have early onset Alzheimer’s starting in their 40’s or 50’s. While increased age is a risk factor for the disease, Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging. Learn more in this blog post, which explains the difference between normal aging and dementia.
There is no cure for Alzheimer’s, but there are a number of treatments available to reduce the severity of symptoms. The Alvin A. Dubin Alzheimer’s Resource Center has more information about resources and community support available in the Fort Myers area.
Shell Point’s Lifecare residents have access to the Memory Care Center and a host of behavioral health services at the Larsen Pavilion, resources for caregivers, and support groups. To find out more about Lifecare at Shell Point, visit http://www.shellpoint.org/lifecare.html.