Researchers are continually expanding their understanding of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. While they have not yet discovered a cure or guaranteed method of prevention, they have become more knowledgeable about potential risk factors. A recent article by WCVB outlines some of these risks. Always Best Care of Asheville-Hendersonville has released a statement to the press regarding strategies for reducing risk of dementia and embracing a healthier lifestyle.
“Dementia and Alzheimer’s can be life-changing conditions,” says Jim Smeaton, owner of Always Best Care of Asheville-Hendersonville. “In the absence of a cure, the best we can do is take steps to reduce risk and focus on maintaining good physical and mental health. Not only could these approaches help ward off dementia, they can also protect against other health concerns as well.”
Several risk factors such as diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol can be managed through diet, exercise, and medication. Smeaton encourages seniors to remain active and engage in various forms of exercise that can not only help to manage weight, but also improve flexibility and balance at the same time. According to the article, “Exercise doesn’t only benefit your body, but your brain as well. There is evidence that physical activity could slow cognitive decline.” The specifics of exactly what kind of exercise and for how long are still being studied.
Preparing heart healthy, well-balanced meals can help as well. “Ensuring seniors have access to fresh, healthy foods and assistance in preparing them can support better eating habits,” says Smeaton. “An in-home caregiver can take them shopping, help prepare and store meals, and provide companionship and help during meal times.” Studies have shown that the Mediterranean or DASH diets may be beneficial in supporting improved brain health.
Maintaining a socially active lifestyle may help as well. The article notes, “Volunteering, being part of a club and other social activities may help prevent dementia and protect against cognitive decline, but studies show more research needs to be completed before definite conclusions can be made.” Smeaton adds that these activities also reduce risk of depression and isolation as people age and recommends looking into options available throughout the community.
Cognitive training exercises may also stimulate memory and reduce risk of cognitive decline, but more research is needed in this area too. Doing puzzles, Sudoku, crossword puzzles, and other activities that keep the mind active and exercise different areas of thinking can keep seniors more engaged, says Smeaton. “It gives them something to do and keeps them thinking and making connections.”
Making small changes in their lives such as improving diet and exercise, cutting back on drinking, quitting smoking, and staying socially active can have a multitude of benefits, says Smeaton. Potentially reducing risk of dementia is just one part. “An in-home caregiver can support seniors in making and following through with these changes,” explains Smeaton. “They provide regular assistance and support safety within the person’s own home, which can boost confidence, independence, and quality of life.”
To find out more about these valuable services, contact Always Best Care of Asheville-Hendersonville at (828) 989-7263 or visit the organization online.
Always Best Care of Asheville-Hendersonville specializes in providing personalized, non-medical, in-home care to seniors in Western North Carolina. All caregivers have gone through a rigorous screening process to ensure safe and high quality care, and are bonded, insured, and background checked. Senior services include companionship in the home or to go out in the community; assistance with daily activities such as cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, and medication management; as well as basic personal care such as eating, dressing, bathing, grooming, and mobility. Always Best Care recognizes the importance of supporting seniors in safely and comfortably aging in place and maintaining their independence.
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Company Name: Always Best Care of Asheville-Hendersonville
Contact Person: Jim Smeaton
Phone: (828) 989-7263
Country: United States