Late Stages of Dementia

Written by vee enne
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Dementia is a progressive disease that is not a normal part of the ageing cycle, and it causes a serious loss of mental abilities. It can affect memory and communication, causing distress to both the patient and family members. As dementia advances, physical symptoms also interfere with the patient's ability to accomplish his normal daily physical activities without assistance. Due to these issues, a patient in the final stages of dementia will most likely need around-the-clock care. If the family is able to provide the necessary care, the patient can be kept at home. If not, an assisted living facility, or in-home hospice care, may be suitable to provide for the medical needs of this type of patient.

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The effects of the late stages of dementia on memory and communication may be dramatic. A patient with dementia may progress to the point where she no longer attempts to communicate. If she does speak, it may be to herself, or to relatives or loved ones who are no longer alive. Confusion and memory loss may cause the patient to revert to her childhood and speak with former playmates or friends who are not present.

Physical problems also become exaggerated in the final stages of dementia. The patient may be unable to get around at all without help, or simply may stop trying to ambulate altogether. He may also lose his ability to control his bowels and urinary functions. Bed sores or other pressure injuries are also common in the final stages of dementia, due to the patient's inability to move independently.

A patient in the final stages of dementia typically has trouble with the process of eating. She may choke or aspirate food when she is fed, or she may develop stomach ulcers. Due to the complications of eating with dementia, weight loss is a very common problem with final stages of this condition. At times the doctor may deem it necessary to place a feeding tube in order for the patient to get an adequate amount of nutrition.

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