Mental difficulties are a prevalent condition that that can negatively affect the quality of an older person’s life. As the person ages, mental acuity often suffers. Following are some of these difficulties and methods to lessen or avoid them.
Dementia has many causes, but is equally devastating regardless of the cause. Many times the direct cause is not known. It is just believed to be due to aging. Alzheimer’s disease is just one of many different causes. Aging can lead to atrophy of the brain, causing memory loss and personality changes. Sometimes paranoia is associated with the condition. It may progress to the point the sufferer cannot talk or think. Dementia cannot usually be cured, though with some conditions it can be lessened. It is important to encourage mental engagement as long as the sufferer is able to do so. At some point, thought processes will preclude even simple reading activities.
Stroke is the result of either sudden blocking of blood flow to the brain, or to an excess of blood in the area due to the leakage from a blood vessel. The result may be memory loss and confusion, possible loss of speech, and difficulty with balance and walking, as well as numbness in the affected parts of the body. Recovery and/or improvement involve intensive rehabilitation therapy. It is important to have someone to encourage the sufferer to make efforts for improvement.
This is a disease that affects young as well as older persons. It is a loss with reality. It is accompanied by hallucinations, delusions, and lack of the ability to make decisions. It can be one of the most outwardly manifested mental conditions, often causing bizarre behavior. Though there are no real preventatives, it is important for the condition to be recognized early and treatment sought. This usually requires another person who notices the changes. Any significant changes should be immediately discussed with a professional person to plan a course of treatment.
This disease is the result of function of brain cells. At present, it is incurable, though treatable. Medicines can delay the devastation of the physical manifestations of Parkinson’s Disease. It manifests in shaky movement, loss of body control and balance, and rigid and slow muscle movements. It is important for a person suffering from Parkinson’s Disease to stay physically and mentally active. Since either is frustrating for the sufferer, it is important to have a significant other to encourage activity and mental engagement.