Understanding the Lesser-Known Types of Dementia
 
There are over half a million people in Canada who suffer from Dementia today. By 2031, that number is projected to increase by 66 percent. Globally, about five to seven percent of individuals over the age of 60 suffer from some type of Dementia, and by the age of 85, between 25 and 50 percent of people display symptoms of Dementia, specifically Alzheimer’s disease.

There are many different types of Dementia that are much less familiar to most people than Alzheimer’s disease. Although it’s extremely important to be able to spot the signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s, it’s also vital to understand the other types of Dementia so you can seek help for an affected loved one right away if you suspect they exhibit signs of the disease.

Integracare provides Mississauga and Toronto Dementia Care services right at home. We believe that the ageing process is better spent within the comfort of familiar surroundings and that Seniors have a right to remain in a place that they love and are comfortable.

We deliver important health services to Seniors who choose to live at home. If your loved one has recently been diagnosed with Dementia, we’re here to help. We strongly believe that everyone should be able to feel comfortable and safe as they age and that everyone has a right to the highest quality in healthcare services.

Since 2017, Integracare has invested in a comprehensive set of Dementia Care training programs provided by the Alzheimer Society of Toronto.

We continuously place our Caregivers through this training program to ensure that every single one of our Personal Support Workers (PSWs) are equipped with the knowledge and resources needed to support Clients through the different stages of Dementia. It’s a ground-breaking and exclusive partnership that we’re proud of, and it continues to make us the Dementia Care provider of choice in Toronto and Mississauga.

Our Personal Support Workers and other frontline healthcare workers are trained to dramatically improve the quality of life for people living with Dementia and their family and friends.

Take a look at the benefits of our home healthcare services, and our at-home Dementia Care services. So that you’ll be able to identify any warning signs, we’ll also take notice of the rarer, less-familiar types of Dementia.

 

Parkinson’s Disease-Related Dementia

 

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disease that affects many middle-aged and older adults. Parkinson’s disease can often lead to Dementia. Symptoms of the disease affect a person’s motor skills such as stiffness, tremors, slowed movement, and impaired balance.

American non-profit organization The Alzheimer’s Association states that approximately 50 to 80 percent of people with Parkinson’s disease will develop Dementia as the disease progresses.

The changes in the brain caused by Parkinson’s disease begin in a region that plays a significant role in the body’s movement. These lead to early symptoms that include shakiness, tremors, muscle stiffness, stooped posture, a lack of facial expression, and difficulty initiating movement. As these brain changes spread, they begin to affect mental functions, including the ability to pay attention, memory, and planning the steps needed to complete a task.

Other common symptoms to look for include:

 

 

If Dementia symptoms begin within a year after motor issues began, a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Dementia is warranted. Sometimes these symptoms of Dementia are considered a part of the disease itself, but there are other times when a separate diagnosis may be made.

 

Live-in Care

 

When your loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease Dementia it might be time to consider our home healthcare options that include Mississauga live-in caregiver services that ensure your family member or friend has 24-hours supervision.

Toronto Dementia Care services

At Integracare, our live-in Caregivers are thoroughly screened through background checks and references. We want to make sure that they have a strong ability to provide quality personalized care and form meaningful relationships with Clients. We match Caregivers and Clients based on the unique medical needs and personal preferences of Clients.

Our live-in Caregivers in Toronto and Mississauga are equipped to assist with meal preparation, personal care, daily living and other duties as assigned. You can rest easy knowing that we also have Registered Nursing Coordinators on staff that regularly visit our Clients to ensure that Caregivers and Clients are well matched.

 

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Related Dementia

 

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease is a Prion disease, which means it occurs when prion protein that is found throughout the body begins folding into an abnormal three-dimensional shape. This shape change gradually triggers prion protein found in the brain to fold into the same abnormal shape.

The disease causes a type of Dementia that worsens unusually fast. The most common types of Dementia, such as Lewy Body Dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, typically develop at a significantly slower pace.

It’s not yet fully understood, but the abnormal shape of the prion protein that occurs destroys brain cells. The resulting damage leads to a rapid decline in reasoning and thinking as well as confusion, involuntary muscle movements, mood changes, and difficulty walking.

The disease is rare, with about 1 million new cases worldwide each year. However, it’s important to discuss and to be able to identify it if it occurs in someone you love.

The easiest way to tell if Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease is affecting an individual is the rapidity of worsening Dementia signs. Some of the symptoms include:

 

  • Apathy, agitation, and mood swings
  • Depression
  • A general confusion that is worsening quickly
  • Problems with planning, memory, and judgment
  • Vision problems, such as double vision and hallucinations
  • Muscle stiffness and involuntary jerky movements
  • Difficulty walking

 

Sadly, there is no treatment that slows down or stops the underlying brain cell destruction caused by this disease or other prion diseases. Current therapies focus on supporting individuals diagnosed as well as their families. Integracare’s Mississauga home health care professionals offer varying modes of support. We always maintain an open conversation with your loved one’s doctors to ensure that we’re aware of any prescribed pain medication and other treatments.

Those affected with the disease will lose the ability to move or speak and will require full-time support to meet their daily needs. Although there isn’t a “cure” or one specific treatment that will end the suffering of those with Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, as a concerned family member, you can support them by being educating yourself with the disease and offering Caregiving services.

Don’t tackle this alone. Your loved one will benefit greatly when there are many supportive sets of hands.

 

At-home Massage Therapy

 

We offer at-home massage therapy to all of our Clients, including Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease patients, who suffer from muscle pain and stiffness.

Our Registered Massage Therapists (RMTs) will visit your loved one’s place of residence to offer the gentle and nourishing treatment of massage therapy.

In the later stages of the disease, individuals with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease become completely dependent on others for their daily needs and comfort.

Parkinson’s related Dementia and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease are just two types of Dementia that exist. Speak with your doctor to learn about Dementia risk reduction and to familiarize yourself with the many types of Dementia that are out there. If you identify symptoms early, you could help your loved one get the help they need right away.

Speak with your loved one about the benefits of at-home healthcare. We’re here to make this challenging time of your life a little bit easier.