For decades, it was widely accepted that there is no cure for Alzheimer’s and dementia. While this may remain true today, things are rapidly changing in the field of brain science. In the last six years, researchers and scientists have uncovered at least 36 drivers for cognitive decline, allowing for earlier detection, and novel interventions to slow progression, ease symptoms, and improve the lives of those with dementia, and their caregivers. Increasingly, it is possible to live well with a diagnosis of dementia.
June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. If we haven’t gotten your attention yet about the importance of early detection and treatment, NOW is the time to hear this life-changing message.
As the landscape for dementia is rapidly changing, so are the benefits of early detection and diagnosis increasing. In addition to timely access to treatments and clinical trials, early detection allows families to push back with proven lifestyle changes to reduce symptoms and slow disease advancement. It gives families the time to plan for the future: legal, financial, and end-of-life choices can all be addressed in due course.
And perhaps most significant, opportunities to live well in the present and stave off decline are on the rise.
Financial considerations are among the most common concerns of families with dementia in their midst. In-home and long-term care now costs upwards of $100,000 annually. Kemper Cognitive Wellness is delaying those care expenses with comprehensive and personalized intervention plans aimed at managing symptoms and halting progression allowing some to stay home longer. Families are able to extend precious time together in this stage of life, which is priceless.
Let go of the stigma of cognitive loss and get diagnosed early. For timely and accurate early detection to occur, one must feel comfortable discussing symptoms and concerns with their healthcare provider. While almost 90% of Americans would like to know if Alzheimer’s was the cause of confusion and memory loss, over half of people 45 and older with subjective cognitive impairment have not discussed their concerns with their physician. Take the first step; talk to your doctor. (Source:https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/67/wr/mm6727a1.htm)
Be your own advocate. Oftentimes we hear of physicians dismissing patients’ concerns over declining cognitive function. Don’t be dismayed; seek a provider who will take your concerns seriously. Look to holistic health professionals or functional medicine physicians, if your primary care doctor won’t address your concerns or is dismissive.
Get a solid diagnosis. If you have received a diagnosis from your physician based on an in-office assessment, consider advanced neurological testing through a neurologist to verify the diagnosis. There are over 80 known diagnoses related to cognitive loss. It is important for you and for future generations of your family to have a solid diagnosis, as advancements in treatment options are rapidly occurring.
Get a personalized plan to push back. Memory loss is sometimes temporary and caused by an imbalance or deficiency (for example, hormone/metabolic problems, infections, immune disorders, medication side effects, nutritional deficiency, gut issues, and tumors). Kemper Cognitive Wellness offers a comprehensive Discovery Assessment of Cognitive Health, a deep evaluation to uncover root causes of decline, and a customized protocol to halt progression, ease symptoms, and in some cases, recover lost abilities. Several options and payment plans are available.
While Alzheimer’s and dementia are not completely reversible at this time, it is possible to improve and make life better. The key is to act early – ideally, as soon as you notice symptoms. Our team of practitioners offers education, services, and supports to individuals and families facing cognitive loss. Telehealth is also an option. We’re located on the near West Side of Cleveland, and we are ready to partner with you to push back against cognitive loss. Unable to get started with us in office in Cleveland? Check out our online course for caregivers, Live Well With Dementia, for education and tools to support your loved one following a diagnosis.
Kemper Cognitive Wellness is emerging as one of the nation’s leading brain health centers for Alzheimer’s and dementia prevention, support, and services. Located in Cleveland, Ohio, Kemper treats conditions of mood, memory, and mind, from brain fog, ADHD and depression, to Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Learn more at KemperWellness.com or call 216/337-1400 for a complimentary assessment.
-Jenny Kemper, Director, Kemper Cognitive Wellness