When Should You See a Specialist for Dementia?
Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive disorders are complicated health conditions that originate in the brain but can affect every other system of the body. Therefore, for people with dementia to live at their best, they need many kinds of support, including access to medical practitioners with specialized skills. The types of physicians who treat the symptoms of dementia include neurologists, gerontologists, and geriatricians, among others, and if you have a loved one who has a cognitive or memory condition, it’s vital to have one or more of these specialists you and your loved one trust.
Another very critical form of support for people with dementia is social, community-based care, and at Town Square at the Jersey Shore, we offer the Monmouth & Ocean County, NJ area not only the best dementia-appropriate adult day enrichment but also connections to many other important resources for our members and their caregivers. Contact us now to learn more or schedule a tour, or read further for more details on specialized medical care for dementia.
The Benefits and Importance of Seeing a Specialist to Diagnose Dementia
If you suspect your parent, spouse, or someone else close to you may have a cognitive condition, you should encourage them to see a medical specialist with dementia care experience as soon as possible. Only testing administered by a qualified professional can tell with any degree of certainty what kind of dementia a person has, if any, and what stage their condition has progressed to. And appropriate care is only possible when armed with this knowledge.
If any form of dementia is diagnosed, regular follow-up appointments are also important. People with dementia have changing needs over time because they have a condition that is progressive and has no cure. Therefore, the specialist physician may have updated recommendations for your loved one that will help them maintain their best quality of life.
What to Expect During a Specialist Appointment for Evaluating Dementia
An initial appointment with a medical specialist to make a potential diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia will involve a number of tests, some of which may be administered at that time and some of which may be scheduled for another date. These tests may seem complicated, but the administering physician will walk the person being tested through every step. Only by considering the results of multiple tests as a whole can an accurate diagnosis be made.
If your loved one is indeed diagnosed with dementia, it’s natural to feel shock and a flood of emotions upon receiving the news. You may want to seek the support of people in your life as you process this information, and it’s important to know the basic facts of having a parent or partner who’s living with dementia.
The Role of a Specialist in Helping People Live with Dementia
Ultimately, dementia care has medical, psychological, social, and many other aspects, and advice from a gerontologist, neurologist, or other physician plays a major role in helping caregivers determine the best path forward. Medication may sometimes be necessary for some people with dementia, but often has undesired side effects, and all professionals involved in memory care are aware of this.
As your loved one’s specialist practitioner can tell you, there are care modalities that can increase overall health for people with dementia, and reminiscence therapy is one of the most-studied and most-trusted of these. Town Square at the Jersey Shore’s programming incorporates the ideas of reminiscence therapy as developed by the George G. Glenner Alzheimer’s Family Centers along with many other physical and cognitive health practices including movement, social connection, and proper nutrition. All told, every day at Town Square brings our members together for not only interactive vintage fun, bonding, and enrichment, but also many other ways of bolstering life satisfaction and health at home.
Some of our members have experienced lasting benefits due to the long-term therapeutic effects of our programming, as their loved ones report. These have included better sleep each night, the ability to discontinue using anti-anxiety medications, and overall improved mood and outlook. Above all our members care about one another and extend acts of concern and kindness every single day. They all love the feeling of being cheered on by the rest of the Town Square community, which encourages exploration, trying new things, and a focus on ability and accomplishment.
Contact us today to learn more about what Town Square at the Jersey Shore has to offer, including our leading senior day programs, support groups, educational resources, and more.