One of the biggest health problems facing older adults is Alzheimer’s Disease. This disease affects the brain’s ability to recall information and memories correctly.
It commonly starts with a dementia diagnosis and the individual gradually develops other symptoms as they suffer from a worsening memory.
At its worse, Alzheimer’s Disease can cause a person to forget their friends, family, and even their own identity. With such a dismal diagnosis, many people turn to their healthcare professionals for medication, nursing home information and treatments to slow the effect of this disease.
While these options may be helpful for some, others may respond better to holistic approaches to Alzheimer’s Disease care.
What is Holistic Care?
Holistic care refers to a care system that focuses on every aspect of a person. These include the mind, body and spirit of a person. Holistic care professionals believe that when caring for a person, these three element must be addressed for overall success.
If even one of the aspects is ignored, the care is not likely to be effective and the person may continue to suffer. Holistic care may combine modern medicine and herbal supplements while paying special attention to both spiritual and emotional health.
A strong relationship between the practitioner and the patient is also important for holistic care. This allows the practitioner and the patient to create a bond, share ideas and values, and explore treatment options together.
It is important to understand that Alzheimer’s Disease is not curable. While there are ways to slow the progress of the disease and even to manage the symptoms, there is no way to make Alzheimer’s go away completely.
Living with the Disease
The natural approaches explored through Holistic care are more geared toward improving the quality of the patient’s life.
While some people are perpetually dealing with the disease instead of living with it and managing the symptoms, holistic care focuses on helping individuals live the best lives they can while finding both modern and natural ways to thrive with Alzheimer’s.
Natural supplements are also used to help improve memory and increase the health of the brain. These herbal supplements include the following:
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids (can also found in fish like salmon, mackerel, and tuna)
- Ginkgo Biloba
- Vitamin E (found in nuts)
There are other holistic approaches that are effective for Alzheimer’s and Dementia care. In line with the three main elements of the person, these holistic care approaches focus on things the patient as well as their friends and family can do to help assuage the symptoms of their Alzheimer’s.
Changing the Environment:
Sometimes the surrounding environment can contain triggers that worsen adverse actions and behaviors of those with Alzheimer’s Disease.
By eradicating these triggers, care practitioners and family members can actually reduce anxiety, agitation, and other harmful symptoms of this disease.
Foods rich in vitamins and other nutrients can work wonders for those suffering with an Alzheimer’s diagnosis.
By changing a few aspects of one’s diet, different parts of the body can get healthier which can increase the comfort of the patient. Fiber rich foods and plenty of liquids and fruit can help promote a healthy bowel and increased hydration. This can lead to increased muscle strength, internal organ health, and more.
Activities and Communications:
Actively talking to Alzheimer’s patients, engaging with activities with them, and spending plenty of time together can holistically help them to decrease depression, boredom, loneliness, and even confusion.
Both verbal and nonverbal communication as well as simple activities that incorporate art, music, and exercise are a great way to help patients retain mental health and awareness.