Memory loss can be frustrating to deal with and can result in a feeling of helplessness. It is essential to find a way to help your loved ones and surround them with a helpful community to assist them during a possible transition period. Providing support for your loved one dealing with memory loss is an ongoing journey.
There are certain methods you can focus on to help.
Let’s explore how memory loss can affect a loved one and how you can assist them.
Causes of Memory Loss
Memory loss can stem from things like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia which may come in many forms.
Along with these main diseases that can appear in older adults, some other factors can cause memory loss, including:
- Sleep deprivation
- Lack of oxygen to the brain
- Emotional trauma
- Neurodegenerative illnesses such as Huntington’s disease or Parkinson’s disease
- Head injuries or concussions
- Depression and stress
Some of these conditions are treatable—in some cases, memory loss can be reversed depending on the condition.
However, diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia present a cognitive impairment-induced form of memory loss in older adults.
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive form of dementia. It’s a condition that negatively affects memory, thinking, and behavior. These changes interfere with daily living and require supervised care.
Memory issues of Alzheimer’s disease may include:
- Repeating statements and questions over and over
- Forgetting conversations, appointments, or events
- Routinely misplacing possessions
- Getting lost in familiar places
- Forgetting the names of friends and family members
The memory issues associated with Alzheimer’s disease require consistent supervision to ensure a safer environment for your loved one.
Dementia is a group of symptoms severely affecting memory, thinking, and social abilities. Dementia is caused by damage to or loss of nerve cells and their connections to the brain. While dementia is associated with memory loss, it’s not the sole symptom.
Some common cognitive signs and symptoms of dementia include:
- Memory loss
- Difficulty communicating or finding words
- Struggling with visual and spatial abilities
- Having trouble with planning and organizing
- Confusion and disorientation
Some psychological changes include:
- Personality changes
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia in older adults.
Understanding some causes of memory loss can help you assist your loved one who may be dealing with memory loss.
Helping Someone With Memory Loss
Being around someone you love who’s suffering from memory loss can be difficult.
Depending on the severity of their condition, there are some ways you can help:
- Keep a checklist of any meditations they need and when they should take them.
- Help them update their calendar and go with them to run errands like grocery shopping.
- Help your loved one organize their home and keep important items in plain sight.
- Encourage them to remain socially active and keep in touch with friends and family.
- Depending on the severity of memory loss, look into memory support and find the right community for your loved one.
- Be patient with someone else’s memory loss—it’s important to consider their feelings of frustration with memory loss.
Getting your loved one the right care when their needs outweigh your abilities is essential to maintaining their quality of life.
When trying to help someone with memory loss, patience is key, and knowing when to help them transition to a new chapter in their life is essential. Finding the right environment and community for your loved ones can help them deal with memory loss.
Get in touch with professionals and learn more about memory loss and whether your loved one can benefit from moving to a new community.