Dementia Care Services
Caregiving With Love® specializes in dementia and Alzheimer’s care. Our administrators are required to complete continuing education courses at the USF Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute in Tampa where we learn the latest treatments, diagnosis tools, and how to assist the primary caregiver (spouse or responsible individual and if none, then our primary caregiver) with the updated strategies for coping with these conditions. We train our caregivers in these areas so that we can have a thorough understanding of the unique needs and behaviors of clients who suffer from these conditions.
Below is some basic information to help you understand Dementia. For more in-depth information about the disease, support groups, and other assistance, see our Links.
Dementia Care: About Dementia
Dementia is the umbrella of mental cognitive disorders covering a number of causations including Alzheimer’s disease (the majority of cases), Parkinson’s disease, CVA (Cerebral Vascular Accident), aka Vascular Dementia or stroke, Lewy Body Disease, Frontotemperal Dementia, alcoholism dementia, among others.
Alzheimer’s Disease comprises the majority of cognitive disorders and is attributable for more than 50 % of cases. It is caused by plaque on the brain and until the last couple of years, could only be definitely diagnosed by autopsy. Today, thanks to advanced research by institutions such as the USF Health Byrd Alzheimer Institute in Tampa, it can be diagnosed with the aid of MRIs (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and PET (Positron Emission Tomography) scans and consultation with the appropriate professionals.
One critical aspect of dealing with a loved one who has dementia is understanding the way a brain with dementia processes information. Ron Andrews, our founder and president, coined the following phrase to help the layman understand this change: “A dementia brain thinks like this— ‘two plus two equals yellow,’™ i.e. there is no logic in the connections.”
These diseases are harder on the primary caregiver than on the person with the disease. Researchers have found that within the same time period that 3 clients with dementia pass away, 7 of their primary caregivers will pass away. If you or a family member or friend is that primary caregiver, you have to ask yourself, ‘If something happens to me, what about my loved one? Who’s going to care for them?’ ‘Who is going to look out for their best interest, making sure they’re not taken advantage of?’ “Keep them safe from wandering?’
You must get some assistance so you can get away and relax. Caregiving With Love® has been providing this help since 2001. We can offer assistance for a few hours a day up to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our caregivers work in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco, and Eastern Polk Counties, allowing us to serve Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Palm Harbor, Brandon, Wesley Chapel, New Port Richey, Sun City Center, Plant City, and surrounding areas of Tampa Bay and West-Central Florida.
AD (Alzheimer’s disease) is treated by a family practitioner or neurologist using 2 classes of pharmaceuticals; the Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors (Aricept®, Exelon®, Razadyne®, Cognex®) and the Glutamate Antagonist (Namenda®). Other types of treatments include: Medical Foods such as Axnnona®, Cerefolin NAC®, Resevetrol®, Deplin®, FOLTX®; Neutraceuticals such as Vitamin E, Coenzyme Q10 and Alternative Therapies including Coconut Oil, Ginko, Acetyl-L-Carnitine, Huperzine A.
Behavioral characteristics in the beginning stage include short term memory loss, i.e. can’t remember what he or she had for dinner last night, but remembers in detail occurrences from the distant past (20 years ago); bizarre disconnected statements, frustration with inability to remember, repeats the same story over and over, gets lost where previously he or she did not, exhibits difficulty connecting names and words for common things, loses interest in hobbies or games once enjoyed, loses things more often, and undergoes some personality changes.
As the disease progresses from the mild stage to the moderate stage, the patterns that emerge may include: becoming more confused, often requires supervision consistently, hallucinates (sees things that aren’t there), believes things are real when they are not, argues more often and becomes agitated or unsettled, i.e. paces, ruminates, rummages, and may wander.
In the severe stage, people suffering from Alzheimer’s struggle to comprehend simple directions or even words, usually need full-time care, may not recognize friends and/or family members, may not recognize themselves in the mirror and even body parts, and may not be able to care for themselves.
It is recommended that when the first stages are observed to take your loved one to an Alzheimer’s specialist or research facility to establish a baseline so the progression of the disease can be reliably noted and proper medication can be started. Have a professional go through your home and check for safety concerns. It is also recommended that you establish how your loved one will be cared for.
Caregiving With Love® is here to help you through this difficult time. Some people don’t want to put a loved one in a home, yet providing care all by yourself can be a huge undertaking. That’s where we come in. Call us at 813-837-6664 (Tampa) or 727-781-3800 (St. Petersburg) to discuss how we can help ease your burden and grant you peace of mind.
970 Lake Carillon Dr, Suite 323 St Petersburg, Fl 33716