There are nearly 6 million people throughout the United States who are currently living with Alzheimer’s disease. If you are a family caregiver for one of these people, you have likely noticed their symptoms cover a large range, possibly even impacting elements of their daily functioning you did not expect. One thing many people living with Alzheimer’s disease experience even during early parts of the progression is difficulty getting adequate nutrition. You may notice your senior has lost a considerable amount of weight even if they were not trying to, or may have even gained weight due to not eating a proper diet. You may also notice them not eating foods they used to like, or becoming extremely specific about the foods they will eat. This can have a negative impact on their physical health and well-being, but also on their cognitive functioning and even the progression of the disease. Understanding why your senior with Alzheimer’s disease might not be getting good nutrition on a regular basis can help you to take the proper steps to support better nutrition as they age and progress.
Some of the reasons a senior with Alzheimer’s disease might not be getting good nutrition include:
- Forgetting when they are supposed to eat, or when they ate last. Your senior might not remember how frequently they are supposed to eat, or may think they have eaten recently and do not need to eat again
- Seniors with Alzheimer’s disease can stop being able to recognize feelings of hunger, and even if they do notice those hunger pangs, they may not understand what they are or what they need to do in order to resolve them
- Your aging parent may struggle with not remembering how to cook or prepare foods, or may not even remember how to do basic things such as read instructions or utilize kitchen equipment
- Changes in their brain can make it so your parent no longer tastes food the same way, which can change the types of foods they are interested in eating
- Your senior may no longer recognize certain foods, and begin to eat only for those foods they readily remember
If your aging parent has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, or you have noticed increased challenges and symptoms of the disease, now may be the ideal time for you to consider elderly care. Caring for a senior with Alzheimer’s disease is extremely challenging, and the customized services of an elderly home care services provider can make a tremendous difference both for your senior, and for you as their family caregiver. These customized services are specifically designed to help your parent cope with the challenges they currently face due to their Alzheimer’s disease and other difficulties, and to make them feel more confident that they will be prepared for new challenges as their disease progresses. These services can include transportation, assistance with grocery shopping and meal preparation, mealtime support, companionship, and more.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care in South Riding, VA, please contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands today. (703) 982-0050.