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Parkinson's Disease with Dementia -
By Sandra Fuson, Staff Writer
Other ideas that you may want to
Keep travel plans simple. As much as
possible, continue established routines if you need to
Keep dangerous objects, such as knives, out of reach and
out of sight. Other objects you may want to put away
include ladders, step stools, small appliances that
require supervision when in use, and anything else in
your home environment that you think would be a danger
to your loved one.
Use mental exercises to keep memory as sharp as
possible. These include puzzles, card games, reading,
listening to music, and even keeping a diary.
Continue a good exercise routine. This not only keeps
the movement portion of PD under control, but it can aid
in cognitive processing as well.
Keep dressing as simple as possible. Buttons and snaps
can be a challenge. Slip-on clothing and even Velcro
Get a wrist or pendant ID for your loved one to wear.
The Alzheimerís Association can provide one.
Develop a plan for finances and how your
loved oneís assets will be used before the dementia
develops too much. Scientists have demonstrated that
each year the person with dementia loses mental
processing at more than twice the rate of a person
without dementia. Youíll want to put these arrangements
in place as soon as possible. Youíll want to consider:
Preparing a will and keeping it in a
Consulting a financial planner to decide how assets need
to be used, dissolved, or otherwise distributed.
Deciding about long-term care options.
Deciding how bills will be paid on an ongoing basis Ė
especially important if the person with Parkinsonís is
not married, is widowed or lives alone (although they
may not be able to continue living alone for long).
By making these decisions in advance, youíll save much
stress later as the disease develops further.
Many people with Parkinsonís will not
develop dementia. For those patients who do, it is
important to learn your medical options and make
adjustments to the home environment. Some of these
adjustments can transition over time, while others need
to be made more quickly. Even with dementia, the person
will have good days and days that thought processes are
not as sharp. By keeping the lines of communication open
with your doctor, the disease can be managed as
effectively as possible, despite its debilitating
effects on daily living.