Alzheimer’s Disease: Diagnosis and Management
In their hearts, rest assured, they will always remember how you always made sure they received the best care. Keep up your good work with a Disability Tax Credit for Alzheimer’s disease.
About 500,000 Canadians are currently suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. This condition destroys memories and leaves a lasting impact on families and loved ones. Whether you are a patient, caregiver, or family member, it is important to understand Alzheimer’s disease.
What is Alzheimer’s Disease?
Dementia is most commonly caused by Alzheimer’s disease. This disease is actually a brain disorder which progressively worsens over time. Alzheimer’s patients will start to lose memories and brain function. Eventually even the most basic tasks will become too difficult to accomplish.
Confusion, nervousness, and poor memory may all be signs of Alzheimer’s disease. Here are some additional symptoms that may indicate Alzheimer’s disease:
- Loss of Memory or Deterioration in Cognitive Ability
- Erratic Behavior or Sudden Behavior Change
- Difficulty Writing or Speaking
- Trouble Interpreting Social or Spatial Relationships
- Aggression or Depression
While there is no single test that will diagnose Alzheimer’s disease, a physician can make a diagnosis based on a sequence of tests that will eliminate other causes of the symptoms. The diagnosis process is time-consuming, and months of monitoring may be necessary to establish a final diagnosis.
Facts about Alzheimer’s Disease
Although Alzheimer’s is a well-known disease, there are still many myths related to Alzheimer’s disease. Here are some facts that about this illness that can help patients and families:
- Alzheimer’s is Not Part of Normal Development – Though some may believe that memory loss is a normal part of getting older, Alzheimer’s symptoms are much more severe than typical aging. Though primarily affecting those age 65 or older, approximately 50,000 Alzheimer’s patients are under the age of 60.
- Alzheimer’s is a Progressive Disease – The disease will worsen over time. As time goes on, patients will continue to deteriorate. Ultimately this can lead to death. In fact, in only five years, 50% more Canadians could have Alzheimer’s.
- Alzheimer’s Impacts the Entire Family – Due to the nature of the disease, Alzheimer’s typically affects whole families, not just the patient. About 17% of Canadians have a family member that has Alzheimer’s.
Disability Tax Credit for Alzheimer’s and other forms of assistance
At this point there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but there are treatments that can help to slow or reduce the progression of symptoms. There are also programs that can help inform, educate, and support patients and families.
- The Alzheimer Society of Canada – Both patients and families can seek help from support organizations. Alzheimer’s support organizations can help patients and families by providing information, helping to locate local services, and by offering support group services.
- Canadian Disability Tax Credit – Alzheimer’s patients and caregivers may qualify for Canadian disability tax credit. This disability tax credit can help cover extra expenses and ensure that these patients are able to live a full life and participate in society.
- Physicians and Nursing Care – Personal physicians can determine a treatment plan as a well as refer patients to care facilities. Physicians can also be an excellent resource for the latest Alzheimer’s research.
- Nursing Home and Hospice Care – At some point, the family may need to consider getting outside help from a nursing home or hospice. The facilities can offer care and counseling if needed.
If a loved one is showing signs of Alzheimer’s disease, be certain to see a physician or neurological doctor as soon as possible. There are organizations that can help support you and you may even qualify for a disability tax credit.