Your aging mother was just diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. It is a devastating day, and you feel lost and out of sorts – and you now know that she feels like this on a daily basis. You know that from now on, things will probably only get worse, but aside from that, you might not know much else about Alzheimer’s. Your mother’s doctor surely briefed you on the condition, but you want to know more so that you can better understand what your mother is going through.
Here is a more in-depth look at what Alzheimer’s disease is, as well as how it was discovered.
What is Alzheimer’s disease?
As you may already know, Alzheimer’s disease in which one’s brain deteriorates progressively over time. The sufferer loses the ability to remember things, to reason, and to think normally, meaning that eventually, they may not be able to function independently at all. This is why many people in the later stages of Alzheimer’s have a home care aide to help them, as they are not capable of doing their daily tasks alone.
Alzheimer’s is the leading cause of dementia among adults, and its onset usually occurs after the age of sixty.
How was Alzheimer’s discovered?
Alzheimer’s was discovered in 1906 when a doctor named Alois Alzheimer came across a woman who was exhibiting signs of a mental illness that was unknown at the time. She had trouble with memory, trouble with language, and strange and bizarre mood swings and behavior issues.
After the woman died, the doctor examined her brain and found many strange clumps and tangles of strange fibers. These clumps (now called “plaques”) and tangles are now known to the cause of Alzheimer’s disease, and the reason behind it. Luckily, though, these things can now be seen even when the person is alive, so the cause of their condition can be known long before their death.
Is there a cure for Alzheimer’s?
Unfortunately, Dr. Alzheimer only discovered the problem, not a solution. At this point in time, there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, although many scientists, doctors, and researchers, are working hard on finding the answer. Although there is no way to stop the progression of the disease, early detection can make a huge difference. There are many medications out there that can make symptoms like behavior problems easier to manage, and there are many activities you and your loved one’s home care aide can do to help jog your loved one’s memory, or make it easier for them to find things around the house.
Alzheimer’s is a diagnosis that no one wants to get, but the more you know, the better prepared you can be for what is coming, and the better able you will be to help your mother deal with the diagnosis. As mentioned before, researchers are always working on a cure to this terrible, progressive illness, and hopefully one day in the future there will be many fewer cases of Alzheimer’s, and many more people who get to keep themselves and their loved ones much longer.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering home care services in Irvine, CA, please contact the caring staff at Canaan Home Care today!