Alzheimer's For Dummies

Alzheimer's For Dummies

Patricia B. Smith

Language: English

Pages: 384

ISBN: 0764538993

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


An estimated 4 million people are living with Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) in America today, with approximately 370,000 new cases diagnosed every year. AD patients live anywhere from 5 to 20 years after their diagnosis; and their inability to care for themselves grows more dramatic as the disease progresses, creating profound implications for their families and healthcare providers. Its impact on families during the caregiving years is overwhelming.

If you have a family member or close friend who’s suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease and you’re looking for current, useful information, then Alzheimer’s For Dummies is for you. This reference guide also is helpful if you

  • Need to know more about its diagnosis and treatment
  • Want to take care of yourself while taking care of your loved one
  • Are not the primary caregiver but want to know how to help
  • Want to know how Alzheimer’s Disease is going to affect you and your loved one

Alzheimer’s For Dummies takes a realistic look at Alzheimer’s Disease, what it is and what it isn’t. It offers pertinent, easy-to-understand advice for dealing with the myriad concerns and responsibilities that a primary caregiver must assume when managing an Alzheimer’s patient. Here’s a sampling of the information you’ll find in this valuable guide:

  • Maneuvering through medical, legal, and financial tangles
  • Distinguishing AD from other brain diseases and medical conditions
  • Handling the fears that may accompany the diagnosis
  • Evaluating current drug therapies; watching out for scams and quack treatments
  • Finding the best doctors; dealing with attorneys and CPAs
  • Looking at Medicare regulations
  • Evaluating the cost of care
  • The current state of research, diagnosis, and treatment

Television personality Leeza Gibbons, whose mother was stricken with AD, writes in the foreword of this book, “There is no upside to keeping your head in the sand. This book is a crucial step in your new fight. Arm yourself with the knowledge waiting for you in these pages. It will help you find answers and resources as you adjust to your new reality.”

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are far from being conclusive to the point of being standard of care. Although patients with advanced AD may not show the same degree of symptom stabilization as patients who started drug therapy earlier in the course of the disease, every AD patient should consider trying these medications, which may help maintain the activities of daily living, even for advanced AD. Sometimes, families don’t realize a medication is benefiting their loved one until they stop it and it triggers an escalation of

their own abilities were less likely to experience burnout, even if their patients exhibited difficult behaviors. Dealing with negative emotions Your attitude toward your caregiving responsibilities depends upon many factors, including the following: Your personality Your relationship with the person you’re caring for, both in the past and in the present Whether you volunteered for the job or were recruited by circumstances beyond your control Who else is depending on you for

family members and friends to form your own personal cheering section. Giving Yourself a Break Family caregivers provide an average of 70 hours per week of care for their loved ones. The number of hours can get even higher as AD progresses and care requirements become more demanding. Seventy hours a week is already almost double a normal 40-hour work-week. A week has only 168 hours. If you’re working 40 hours and providing care for 70 hours, that leaves just 58 hours (which is a little

math problems can give your healthcare provider a surprisingly accurate measurement of the degree of impairment. Here are some things to watch for that you may want to report to your doctor: Does your loved one have difficulty performing simple math problems? Can she balance a checkbook, make change, or calculate a tip? Can she follow a complex train of thought or perform activities that have many sequential steps, such as cooking? Your observations help the doctor construct a

age range all the way up to 47 percent affected in the 85 and older age range. AD patients live anywhere from 5 to 20 years after their diagnosis, and their inability to care for themselves grows more dramatic as the disease progresses, creating profound implications for their families and healthcare providers. AD causes fewer than 50,000 deaths annually, making it only the eighth leading cause of death. But its impact on families during the caregiving years is overwhelming. Particularly

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