10 March 2015 The Struggle Through Alzheimer’s

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Edgardo Rios

Van Bebber

WRI 10-37

10 March 2015

The Struggle Through Alzheimer’s
Alzheimer’s disease is a worldwide disease that affects millions of people everyday and of every age group but it mainly affects elderly people. People ages thirty and up can start developing symptoms. Although some people develop worse cases they all have the same result, which is memory loss. Certain genes have an effect on how the mind functions and cause to function abnormal. Due to the fact that patients are so affected by Alzheimer’s, their loved ones believe that the person they once knew is no longer there. That person later has no real control of how their body functions. It starts off by forgetting minor things but can lead to forgetting simple tasks. The end result can be frightening because the person needs special care since they no longer are able to do anything by themselves.

As much as the patient with Alzheimer’s disease is affected, family members or loved ones can have it just bad or in some cases even worse. The patient can be unaware of the symptoms and how it is transforming their life. The family member and loved ones however, have to see the patient change and turn into a completely new person. When we analyze the mentalities of the people taking care of those patients with Alzheimer’s disease this can result in a positive or negative affect. Family members and loved ones are just as affected by Alzheimer’s diagnosis as the patients themselves, such a radical and devastating disease brings many conflicting emotions but their first impulse may be to leave them vulnerable. Institutional care must be resisted and alternatives must be found or created.

I have seen how Alzheimer’s affects elderly people first hand and how bad patients can actually get. People seem so fine but slowly, the disease starts taking a toll on how people function throughout their daily lives. I remember an elderly woman would come up to me asking questions but not just once, she would ask frequently, although I had already given her an answer. She would often forget the name of her friends and if simply she had already eaten dinner. The disease gradually developed worse and worse that at times she did not know where she was or how to get home. It reached to the point where it was not healthy for her to stay alone and her family had to be contacted to do something for her and eventually she was taken away.

As we can tell it no longer is safe for anyone with Alzheimer’s disease to be roaming around anywhere by themselves. These patients lose a sense of who they are and can no longer perform simple tasks. When this stage in the disease occurs, family and loved ones should get together and plan out how the patient will be taken care of. Nonetheless, there are family members and loved ones who think it is too much responsibility and decide to abandon them at nursing homes. Those who choose to abandon them may not be able to take care of them or just lack the maturity to help out the person in need. Those who do decide to help out the patient needs to look carefully into treatment or long term help.

Alzheimer’s disease is no easy disease to cope with especially when no one knows how handle the patient. Doctors have continually looked for treatment but at the moment there is no specific treatment. There are medications to help the patient with the diagnosis but it does not exactly help them recuperate. However, some specialists recommend to give patients space and to communicate with them about memories they have had. Because there is no exact treatment the best solution would be to be supportive and understanding.

Besides the fact that there is no exact treatment family members and loved ones need to develop a plan in order to take care of the patient in need. As a last result I believe families should look into qualified nursing homes. First everyone involved in the patient’s life should see what they could do to better the health of the patient. Although the patient has a slim chance of recuperating, every one should play a role in trying to help. If the patient is still not deep in the illness loved ones and members of their family could turns watching over them and assuring the safety of the person with the diagnosis.

If the disease has furthered to the point where the patient no longer is conscious of who they are or what they do or the family is incapable of taking care of the patient, that is when alternatives need to be looked into. These alternatives consist of either nursing homes or 24-hour assistance caregivers. When families make these decisions all of the decisions need to be looked into with meticulous care. For any nursing home, family members and loved ones need to ensure the safety of the patient. The patient’s safety is everyone’s priority. There has been dozens of accounts of abuse in nursing homes pertaining to people with Alzheimer’s disease. Since the patients lack memory at times they may forget they were abused and that is when people take advantage of the situation they are in. For that reason, families need to be attentive and look at every detail if they do decide to send the patient to a nursing home. An alternative route is also suggested which would be a 24 hour assistance caregiver which would look after the patients all the time\ ensuring the safety and also trying to prevent from the disease worsening.

Millions of people in the world of all ages begin developing symptoms that relate to Alzheimer’s disease. As much as the person with the disease suffers through it, family members and loved ones are just as affected as the patient. They are responsible for the health and what happens to the person in need as they worsen over time. Those fighting through the disease are often sent to nursing homes or other assisted living facilities, which need to be carefully looked at before deciding, which place is the correct one. If nothing is done, the only thing that the family can feel is regret and sorrow for not helping out those who actually needed it. The first step to recovery for a person with Alzheimer’s is to have the full support and attention of their loved ones.

Works Cited

Anderson, Heather S. "Alzheimer Disease ." Alzheimer Disease. N.p., 7 Jan. 2015. Web. 18 Feb. 2015.

Brooks, Katherine. "The Heartbreaking And Beautiful Faces Of People Living With Alzheimer's Disease." The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, n.d. Web. 18 Feb. 2015.
Impact on Family and Friends." Impact on Family and Friends. N.p., 4 Oct. 2014. Web. 18 Feb. 2015
"Patients with Alzheimers." Patients with Alzheimer's. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Mar. 2015.
Younger/Early Onset | Alzheimer's Association." Younger/Early Onset | Alzheimer's Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2015.

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