We’ve come a long way in treating conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s, and South Mountain Memory Care in Emmaus, Lehigh Valley, PA, is at the leading edge. Gone are the days when anyone with a “mental disorder” was tucked away in an institution like a subhuman. Twenty-five years ago, there was much less written or even talked about with regard to dementia care, and hospital-like long-term care facilities focused on addressing the basic physical needs of their residents. Certain behaviors associated with dementia, such as agitation, were viewed as problems that often were treated with psychotropic drugs. Communities like South Mountain Memory Care work hard to remove the stigma of dementia and provide their residents with the dignity, comfort, and care they need and deserve.
The old joke goes, “An interviewer approached a man on the street and said, ‘The two greatest problems with society are ignorance and apathy. Do you agree?’ The man responded, ‘I don’t know and I don’t care!’”
There is nothing funny about apathy, but it affects about 90% of dementia patients sooner or later. Yet research often doesn’t seem to care. It is often overlooked because it is not as noticeable or disruptive as aggression and other behaviors, and is distinct from depression.
Apathy is a loss of interest and emotions. It can be distressing for families, and is linked with more severe dementia and worse clinical symptoms. Faster decline and care problems can result. Apathy is the most common symptom of dementia, with a bigger impact than memory loss.
Life in the Lehigh Valley has its uncertainties, just like anywhere else. Although the challenges of living in our area may be somewhat different from other places, there are decisions to make and needs to be met that make seniors anywhere a special group. Life changes, especially those that involve family caregivers, may require the help of educated and experienced professionals who can navigate issues related to aging and elder care. Aging Life Care Professionals® are those specialists.
Summer is working its way through the Lehigh Valley, and many citizens are working their way out of the doldrums of isolation and boredom. Getting outside is healthy for both body and mind. The bright sun, the bright colors, and the bright sounds of birds and bugs beckon for our attention.
We at South Mountain Memory Care in Emmaus make resident care and safety a priority. The quality of life we offer extends to the design of our buildings and grounds, using the small house model that promotes happiness and connectedness. We also offer a safe and secure outdoor environment that fosters health and fun.
Money and finances are tricky and controversial topics to begin with — very personal. That sensitivity can be magnified when discussing the need to manage money for loved ones with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. When a person is deemed no longer capable of handling their affairs, a guardian or power of attorney or other system may be set up to manage their assets. These informative tips can help you before you reach that stage and help those who may be charged with your care, as well as those who are currently caring for a loved one.
Here are some things to remember before you might become dependent on others for money management.