Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, and it can negatively impact almost every facet of a senior’s cognitive health. Doctors from around the world continue to invest an incredible amount of time and energy into studying this disease, but they haven’t been able to develop a permanent cure, which is why seniors must take steps to preserve their mental faculties and reduce their risk of Alzheimer’s.
1. Strengthen the Cardiovascular System
Many experts now believe that almost every older adult has the brain plaques that cause Alzheimer’s, but those plaques won’t permanently damage any nearby cells as long as the brain gets plenty of blood, which is just one of the reasons seniors must keep a close eye on their blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure. To strengthen the cardiovascular system, seniors should follow a healthy diet and regularly engage in physical activity.
2. Exercise a Few Times a Week
The Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation claims that regular exercise can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by 50 percent. As a general rule, older adults should aim for 150 minutes of exercise per week. Heading to the gym and taking exercise classes are both great options, but seniors can exercise at home as well. Gardening, carrying out rigorous chores, and going for brisk walks are all great options for those who aren’t interested in training at the gym.
Seniors with cognitive issues or physical health conditions may find it difficult to exercise on their own safely, and a professional caregiver can be of tremendous help. When considering senior home care, Richardson, TX, families should make sure their senior loved ones have the resources they need to maintain their independence and remain healthy. Trusted in-home care professionals can assist seniors with daily tasks like cooking, bathing, and exercise, and they can also encourage them to focus on healthier lifestyle habits.
3. Socialize with Family Members and Peers
Long-term isolation is incredibly unhealthy, and studies have revealed that a lack of social interaction can increase a senior’s risk of Alzheimer’s. When a senior doesn’t interact with loved ones and peers, certain areas of the brain may begin to shut down. At the very least, seniors need to connect with their loved ones a few times a week. Those who don’t have any nearby friends or relatives might want to volunteer at a nonprofit or take classes at a local senior center.
In-home caregivers with training and expertise in methods of cognitive stimulation can be a wonderful asset for seniors with Alzheimer’s. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of in-home care. Richardson families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.
4. Stick to a Strict Diet
Alzheimer’s is sometimes referred to as “diabetes of the brain” because it’s been closely linked to dietary habits. Eating unhealthy foods can result in chronic inflammation of the brain, which can speed up cognitive decline and create additional webs of harmful proteins. The Mediterranean diet is often seen as the best option for older adults who have a higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s. This diet focuses on fresh and organic foods filled with protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates. It also limits the intake of processed sugar and saturated fats.
5. Get More Sleep
During various stages of the sleep cycle, the body flushes out the harmful plaques that destroy brain cells. Without getting enough restorative sleep, the brain won’t ever be able to fully rejuvenate itself. In addition to following a strict nighttime routine, seniors might also want to be tested for common sleep disorders such as sleep apnea. Many of those disorders make it difficult to go through every stage of the sleep cycle.
Aging adults with Alzheimer’s disease can benefit from receiving professional Alzheimer’s care. Richardson seniors need regular mental stimulation when managing memory-related conditions, and a reliable in-home caregiver who has extensive training in Alzheimer’s care can be a great asset. Trust Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate, professional care for your loved one. If your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (469) 573-4213.