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Why Do Dementia Patients Fall

An Increase In Compulsive Ritualistic Behaviors

Avoiding Restraints for Elderly Dementia Patients

One sign of dementia that most people dont expect is the need to complete extreme rituals or compulsive behaviors. Plenty of people have odd habits and like things done a certain way, says Rankin. But while these habits are within the realm of normal, extreme hoarding or detailed rituals or compulsions, such as buying a crossword puzzle book every time they go to the store even if they have hundreds of them, can be dementia symptoms.

Data Extraction And Cmoc Refinement

Data were extracted from included papers using a bespoke online form. This included methodology, appraisal using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool an intervention description, as applicable, using the TIDieR framework and evidence describing contexts, mechanisms or outcomes. Data were extracted by two reviewers independently, one clinician and one non-clinician . Data were discussed at a meeting of reviewers and disagreements resolved. The qualitative team analysed and summarised the data. Following this process, the wording of each CMOc and the set of themes were refined . The process was repeated for the additional papers identified through targeted searches and citation chaining.

Having A Hard Time Managing Money

One of the classic early signs of Alzheimers disease is an increasing difficulty with money management. This might start off as having trouble balancing a checkbook or keeping up with expenses or bills, but as the disease progresses, poor financial decisions are often made across the board. Though many people brush this symptom off as just a normal part of aging, they shouldnt. We tend to associate aging with losing your mind. Thats not healthy aging its a disease, emphasizes Rankin.

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Tips To Prevent Falls For Dementia Patients

There are many things you can do to protect a patient or loved one with dementia to help keep them safe.

  • Check lighting. To help improve perception and heighten sight, make sure that the room is well lit but doesnt have a lot of glare. Try to provide enough lighting to eliminate shadows, which can cause a single surface to appear like a 2 completely different ones and even at different heights.
  • Create contrast. Another way to improve perception and heighten vision capabilities is to improve contrast in a room. For example, furniture should be a different color than the floor and the background. Choose solid colors over patterns. And try to avoid black in a space because it may be confusing and appear like a black hole.
  • Remove clutter. As with any senior who is at risk of falling, you should help eliminate clutter in the home. This can help them avoid accidental trips and falls. Pick up clothes or toys on the floor and pay careful attention to high-traffic walkways. And dont forget about outdoors! Make sure walkways and driveways are clear. For ideas on how to keep the home clutter-free, review our 43-point home safety assessment.
  • Focus on communication: Seniors with dementia may struggle to communicate and understand effectively. As you care for someone with dementia, pay attention to your language. If there is a risk of falling, help them understand by speaking in short sentences with simple language. And always remain positive.
  • Falls More Common In Alzheimer’s Patients

    Understanding Dementia Care. Why does dementia care fall ...

    About 5.4 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease, 5.2 million of whom are 65 or older.

    Falls are a leading cause of disability, premature nursing home placement, and death among older adults. Older people with Alzheimer’s suffer more than double the rate of falls as people without the disorder, because of problems with balance, gait disorders, and visual and spatial perception, Stark says.

    To determine whether falls are a harbinger of memory loss and other cognitive problems in people who will eventually develop full-blown Alzheimer’s disease, the researchers recruited older volunteers who appeared to be cognitively healthy. Their average age was 65, and about two-thirds were female.

    All underwent positron emission tomography scans to measure the amount of Alzheimer’s-associated plaque in the brain.

    Participants were given journals and asked to record the number of falls they had every month for eight months.

    Thirty-six percent of volunteers who did not have large deposits of plaque in their brain suffered falls, a figure similar to that in the general population.

    But among those who did have large deposits of plaque, the fall rate was about 66%, Stark says.

    The analysis took into account factors that are known to raise the risk for falls, including years of education, age, number of medications, alcoholism, and ability to perform activities of daily living.

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    Poor Physical Performance And Increased Risk Of Alzheimers And Dementia

    Wang, Larson, Bowen, and van Belle conducted a study published in 2006 to determine if there was any link between the level of physical ability and the risk for onset dementia and Alzheimers Disease. The researchers studied 2,288 people over the age of 65 over the course of seven years. Of those individuals who scored poorly on the physical performance tests, 319 participants had developed dementia 221 of them were specifically diagnosed with AD. The results were clear in that lower physical performance levels were directly related to an increased risk of dementia and even suggested that poor physical functioning may precede the onset of dementia and AD.

    The finding is well within previous multivariate studies, as summarized by Allan, Ballard, Rowan, and Kenny , all of which concluded that significant risk factors for falling are largely characteristic of dementia symptoms. Some of those factors include visual and cognitive impairment, mobility impairment, balance and gait impairments, muscle weakness, and incontinence. The evidence in these studies supports the assumption that known balance problems should be considered a particular risk for developing dementias and particularly dementias with Lewy Bodies , a dementia characterized by the damaging microscopic deposits causing brain damage. DLB is the third most prevalent form of dementia and accounts for roughly 10 to 25 percent of cases at any given time, including AD.

    What Is Already Known On This Topic

    Compared with cognitively healthy older adults, people with dementia fall more often and sustain more serious fall-related injuries. Because the factors related to increased fall risk in people with dementia are not fully understood, fall prevention guidelines have not been able to make recommendations for this group of older adults.

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    Tips To Prevent Falls In A Dementia Patient

    Falling is one of the scariest things that can happen to seniors and their caregivers, but for the elderly, falls linked to dementia happen twice as frequently and have serious consequences. This increase in fall risk is due to the degeneration of the brain, which is caused by the disease. Let’s take a look at how you can help your loved ones with dementia avoid falls.

    Theme : Intervention Delivery And Evaluation

    Falls Prevention in People with Dementia | David Ganz, MD | UCLAMDChat

    The remaining consensus statements concerned issues of practicality and feasibility for the pilot study .

    Design and feasibility

    In round one of the Delphi survey, 93% of the consensus panel agreed that a complex intervention was needed. It was deemed feasible to recruit 10 patients from each of three sites to the feasibility study. Defining the inclusion criteria for the intervention proved more contentious among the panel. The original brief for this study was to design a new intervention for people with dementia following a fall-related injury. In the initial interviews and focus groups professionals argued that early intervention, prior to significant injury, would be more beneficial. The consensus panel also agreed that the intervention should include patients with non-injurious falls. However, the TOC subsequently strongly recommended amending this to a fall for which healthcare attention was sought. Consensus regarding the time period within which patients had to be recruited following a fall was not reached after two rounds of surveys. Following discussion at the second meeting, it was agreed that patients could be recruited up to 1 month after the index fall.

    Outcome measures

    One aim of the feasibility study is to assess the suitability and acceptability of outcome measures. While the number of falls was seen as the most appropriate outcome measure by the consensus panel, other stakeholders expressed reservations about the sensitivity of this measure:

    Logic model

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    When Do Dementia Patients Stop Eating

    When a patient stops or refuses to eat, things can be very depressing for the caregiver. Drinking and eating are complex and have to do with a control center that is within the brain, which controls the muscles in the throat and neck area.

    Dementia affects this part of the brain as it progresses and things like choking, coughing, grimacing as one swallows, clearing the throat, movements that are exaggerated, especially of the tongue and mouth, refusing to swallow, and spitting the food can be seen. This usually happens in the later stages of the disease.

    Can Falls In Hospital Be Prevented

    Evidence to guide effective falls prevention in hospital is limited with most intervention studies restricted to simple before and after or cluster randomisation designs. A comprehensive review is available but in summary: single interventions such as high risk wristbands and bed signage, medication review, urinalysis and routine prescription of vitamin D are not generally successful in reducing falls or fall rates. Although conceptually attractive, the use of movement alarms has not been successful in reducing fall rates. In common with community-based trials, more promising results are seen when the complex multiple components of risk are accounted for in assessment and managed through relevant interventions. Systematic reviews have consistently suggested that multifactorial assessments linked to appropriate interventions may reduce falls in hospital by 2030%. The optimal combination of components is not, as yet, clearly defined but the assessment of mobility, toileting and continence needs, medication review, vision, confusion and orthostatic blood pressure are important. Similarly, the provision of mobility aids , minimising clutter, clear signage coupled with attention to appropriate footwear, spectacles and hearing aids are simple ways of reducing the potential impact of environmental risk factors.

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    Trusted Advice From Homewatch Caregivers

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths for older adults. Those who live with dementia are especially at risk. Impaired judgment, a decline in sensory perception over time, and an inability tell others about their needs can contribute to an increased fall risk for people living with Alzheimers disease and other dementia-related disorders.

    Ourdementia care team has compiled a 10-point guide that provides easy-to-follow tips to help family members reduce fall risks for their loved ones with dementia.

    Collation Of Results And Development Of A Logic Model

    Preventing Falls In Someone with Dementia

    We collated the findings of the final round of the Delphi survey, consensus panel discussion, and stakeholder feedback to finalise the protocol for the feasibility study and model the intervention. The logic model was developed by the qualitative team informed by existing logic model templates and was discussed by the Trial Oversight Committee .

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    What Are The Signs Of End

    It is important for caregivers to know when an individual with dementia is close to the end of their life, because it helps ensure they receive the right amount of care at the right time. It can be difficult to know exactly when this time is due to the variable nature of dementias progression, but understanding common end-of-life symptoms of seniors with dementia can help. Below is a timeline of signs of dying in elderly people with dementia:

    Final Six Months

    • A diagnosis of another condition such as cancer, congestive heart failure or COPD
    • An increase in hospital visits or admissions

    Final Two-to-Three Months

    • Speech limited to six words or less per day
    • Difficulty in swallowing or choking on liquids or food
    • Unable to walk or sit upright without assistance
    • Incontinence
    • Hands, feet, arms and legs may be increasingly cold to the touch
    • Inability to swallow
    • Terminal agitation or restlessness
    • An increasing amount of time asleep or drifting into unconsciousness
    • Changes in breathing, including shallow breaths or periods without breathing for several seconds or up to a minute

    Patients with dementia are eligible to receive hospice care if they have a diagnosis of six months or less to live if the disease progresses in a typical fashion. Once a patient begins experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is time to speak with a hospice professional about how they can help provide added care and support.

    Falls An Early Clue To Alzheimer’s

    Falls More Common in Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease, Study Finds

    In a study of 125 older adults who appeared physically and cognitively healthy, two-thirds of those with large deposits of Alzheimer’s-associated plaque in their brains suffered falls.

    In contrast, only one-third of those with little or no plaque experienced falls.

    “This is a really important finding. We didn’t expect to see such a significant increase — a doubling – of falls ,” says Susan Stark, PhD, of Washington University in St. Louis.

    “To our knowledge, this is the first study to identify a risk of increased falls related to a diagnosis of preclinical Alzheimerâs disease,” she tells WebMD.

    Preclinical Alzheimer’s disease is used to describe people with large deposits of Alzheimer’s-associated plaque in their brains, despite appearing cognitively normal.

    The findings were presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2011.

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    Eating Nonfood Objects And Rancid Foods

    One surprising early sign of dementia is eating nonfood objects or foods that are rancid or spoiled. This is partly because the person forgets what to do with the things in front of them. For example, dementia patients might try to eat the flower in a vase on a restaurant table because they know they are there to eat, but dont know what the flower is doing there, says Rankin. Unlike some other Alzheimers symptoms or dementia symptoms, this one has few other likely explanations.

    Not Understanding What Objects Are Used For

    Diseases of Aging: What Can We Do to Prevent Dementia, Osteoporosis, and Urinary Dysfunction

    Now and again, most people find themselves desperately searching for the right word. In fact, failing to find the word you are thinking of is surprisingly common and not necessarily a sign of dementia, says Rankin. But losing knowledge of objects not just what they are called, but also what they are used for is an early dementia symptom. Oddly enough, people who are losing this knowledge can be very competent in other areas of their lives.

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    What Do Elderly People Think About Life And Death

    As we get older, death seems to be nearer than when we are younger. In as much as anyone can die regardless of age, for an older person, it seems like it is more likely to happen, especially when dealing with different health conditions that the body does not handle as it used to in the younger years.

    For older persons, death does not always spell sorrow and terror, as is the case with younger people. Many of the older people are contented with what the short-term future has for them. You may think that people may get anxious as they become older, but this is not the case. Older people do not have much sadness and anxiety, especially related to death. They are actually more positive about life and death.

    As we grow older, our perspective shifts. This is when you realize that things are not as they always seem. Most people fear death because they feel that they will lose the things that they have been working so hard to get over the years. However, for older people, this attachment to things acquired is not really pronounced. This is how some of the fear of death actually melts away.

    When you look around you and you realize that there are things that are a part of you that will outlive you actually help in a major way. This could be the legacy we have in children or gardens planted. There are yet others who place value on their country, their religion, or families that live on even after they are gone.

    Six Facts About Falls For Dementia Patients And Caregivers

    As children, we fall, get up quickly, brush ourselves off and continue with our activities. When we become older adults, we dont get up as easily, and can possibly even be injured from a fall. And dementia patients are more likely to fall than older adults who do not have cognitive impairment.

    Here are six facts about falls and ways to help prevent them.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • Each year more than one out of four people ages 65 and over fall in the United States.
  • Falls can lead to serious injury, loss of independence and even death.
  • Falling once doubles your chances of falling again.
  • Each year 3 million older people are treated in emergency departments for fall injuries.
  • One out of five falls causes a serious injury, such as broken bones or a head injury. Head injuries can be very serious, and you should be seen by a doctor immediately if you fall and hit your head.
  • Women fall more often than men and are more likely to develop osteoporosis, a disease that weakens bones and make them easier to break.
  • Many people who fall, even if theyre not injured, develop a fear of falling which can lead to curtailment of their everyday activities. If someone is less active physically, they become weaker which increases the chance of falling. And a vicious cycle begins.

    What You Can Do to Prevent Falls

    Although falls are common in older adults, addressing certain risk factors can help prevent them:

    How AFC Addresses Fall Risks

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    Stages Of Dementia Have A Common Thread: Memory And Motor Problems

    Have you ever been in your home and thought to yourself that you wanted to make a sandwich and just automatically made your way to the kitchen without thinking about it, meanwhile weighing in your mind whether you wanted turkey or ham and whether there was any lettuce leftover in the refrigerator?

    As memory issues arise, the risk of injury due to falling also increases.

    We use our memory unconsciously all the time. Yet memory influences just about everything we do. The three stages of dementia all involve memory to a great extent. As dementia progresses, memory issues become more noticeable, and the risk of falling also increases. According to a study by researchers Allan, Ballard, Rowan, and Kenny older people with dementia are eight times more likely to fall than older people who are not diagnosed with a dementia. As memory issues arise, the risk of injury due to falling also increases.


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