Providing Home Care During Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month
June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. Around the world, tens of millions of people experience Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.
Alzheimer’s can be stressful for many individuals and their family members. It raises many questions, such as where will the person live? Who will care for them? Will their treatment be covered?
Today, we’re going to cover some essential information about Alzheimer’s. We will also explore some of the home healthcare options that are available for both caregivers and patients.
A Quick Primer on Alzheimer’s Disease
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the condition is a type of dementia that impacts an individual’s memory, thinking, and behavior. Over time, as symptoms progress, it will interfere with a person’s normal routine.
The Association outlines some key facts about Alzheimer’s that are important to mention:
- Alzheimer’s is the leading cause of dementia and accounts for approximately 60-80% of cases
- Though often associated with old age, Alzheimer’s can affect people under the age of 65. This condition is known as younger Alzheimer’s or early-onset Alzheimer’s.
- Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease and symptoms will worsen over a span of years.
- Following an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, most patients will live 4-8 years afterwards, but this is not always the case.
- Presently, no cures for Alzheimer’s exist. However, treatments are available to help slow the progression of symptoms.
Alzheimer’s Early Signs
Are you wondering if a loved one is demonstrating early signs of Alzheimer’s? The Alzheimer’s Association advises to look for any of these 10 warning signs:
- Disruptive memory loss
- Difficulties with planning or problem solving
- Experiencing difficulty with completing common regular tasks
- Confusion over time or place
- Vision problems such as difficulty maintaining balance, judging distance, or reading
- Difficulty joining or maintaining a conversation
- Misplacing things while unable to retrace steps
- Poor decision making or judgment skills
- Withdrawing from usual social activities and work
- Displaying otherwise inexplicable changes in mood and personality
If your loved one is demonstrating any of these signs, we recommend that you make an appointment with their doctor as soon as possible. With any dementia, early intervention can help slow down the progression of symptoms more effectively and provide a better quality of life to the individual for longer.
Providing Alzheimer’s Home Care
Depending on the severity of symptoms, adults experiencing Alzheimer’s will require differing levels of care. As symptoms become more severe, a person may require constant supervision.
Today, many adults with Alzheimer’s and other dementias can receive care at home. This is due to innovations like sophisticated home healthcare and telemedicine. Now, people can receive a higher quality of care without needing to live in a facility.
A home healthcare organization can provide benefits to people with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers such as:
Continue Living at Home
Understandably, people prefer to receive care around the comforts of home. A home healthcare organization provides treatment to patients in their private residence without needing to relocate them.
Most individuals with Alzheimer’s or other dementias cannot drive to receive treatment. A home healthcare professional comes to the person’s home to help assist with medication and perform other activities in line with the patient’s prescribed treatment plan.
For people with Alzheimer’s, this allows a greater degree of independence. They can continue to live in their home with a caregiver while a medical professional checks in on their progress regularly.
Much-Needed Relief for Caregivers
Caring for a person with Alzheimer’s can become a full-time job. Symptoms of dementia are unpredictable and patients can require near-constant supervision. This places an immense responsibility on family caregivers.
A visit from a home healthcare professional provides caregivers with much-needed relief. The caregiver can take this time to relax and recharge without worrying about their loved one.
Does Medicare Cover Home Healthcare for Alzheimer’s?
Many senior-aged adults rely on Medicare to provide coverage for a variety of conditions. This is no different for Alzheimer’s.
So, what Alzheimer’s and dementia care costs does Medicare cover? The answer is not all, but some treatments.
In regards to Alzheimer’s, Medicare will cover:
- Inpatient hospital care
- Doctor’s fees
- Most prescriptions (covered under Medicare Part D)
- Up to 100 days of skilled nursing home care (long-term care is not covered)
- In or out-of-home hospice
- Annual wellness visits every 12 months
To find out if your loved one is eligible for Medicare benefits, we recommend you visit Medicare online and complete an initial assessment. The site also provides cost information at a glance.
Get Alzheimer’s Home Healthcare in Ohio and Michigan
Ohioans Home Healthcare provides skilled home healthcare services for people with Alzheimer’s in both Ohio and Michigan. If you are looking to find an at-home treatment solution for your loved one, please contact us at any time for more information.