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Helping People with Memory Problems

The holidays are a great time to connect with family and friends around the dinner table, in front of the television for a big game, for a long walk on a warm, west coast evening, or to enlist some help in shoveling east coast snow. Black Friday shopping, catching a movie, or gathering around a fire pit roasting marshmallows are all ways families unite throughout the holiday season. The holidays are also a perfect time to have family meetings, make major decisions, and to check-up on the well-being of older family members.

Physical, emotional, mental, and cognitive behavioral changes in older family members are more apt to be observed by visiting family members.  In-home and local family care-givers leading busy lives often miss signs of or find reasons to avoid symptoms of memory loss or dementia. A recent study in the journal Neurology found more than half of older adults with diagnosable dementia or memory loss have never seen a doctor. They estimate, “1.8 million people have dementia but haven’t been medically evaluated for the condition”, suggesting dementia may be significantly underdiagnosed.

A conversation suggesting possible symptoms of dementia or memory loss with an older family member can be difficult.  Improving Lives Counseling Services can help. Our family sessions, led by certified, trained, experienced counselors and therapists discuss symptom recognition, diagnostics, treatment, and preventive care. These sessions include valuable training and information on living with and caring for a loved one diagnosed with a physical, mental, or behavioral disorder.

Forgetting simple things, an inability to make decisions, unusual irritability, and personality changes are often symptoms of dementia or early onset Alzheimer’s. Depression, trouble sleeping, anxiety, and bouts of anger also fall into this category. Early diagnosis is a must because many of these conditions are treatable.

Behavioral changes and mental disorders affect the entire family, especially the ones living the closest, assuming the role of care-giver. Make it easier on yourself and your immediate family by getting your loved ones the help and support they need. Improving Lives Counseling Services combines therapy, counseling, clinical services, integrative, and alternative solutions for seniors, adolescents, children, and adults in a safe, private, secure setting. Have the talk; a better life lies within your reach. Call us.