Deaths from Alzheimer’s disease rising

1in3&69sec

From 1999 to 2014, United States deaths from Alzheimer’s disease rose by 54.5 percent. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Alzheimer’s death rate rose during those 15 years from 16.5 to 25.4 deaths per 100,000 people. In 2014, 93,541 people died from Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s, the leading cause of dementia and the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States, caused 3.6 percent of deaths in 2014.

Researchers expect rates will continue to rise as life expectancy increases. About 5.5 million Americans are living with the disease. That number is expected to rise to 16 million by 2050.

There is a trend for more people with Alzheimer’s to die at home rather than a medical facility. The number of Alzheimer’s patients dying at home increased from 13.9 percent to 24.9 percent from 2009 to 2014. During the same time period, the number of who died from Alzheimer’s in medical facilities fell from 14.7 percent in 1999 to 6.6 percent in 2014.

The disease mainly affects people over the age of 65. The rise in Alzheimer’s cases is attributed to the increasing numbers of older people, as medical improvements have led to fewer deaths from conditions such as heart disease. However, some of the increase may be the result of more accurate reporting by doctors.

At this time there is no cure for Alzheimer’s. It is the leading cause of long term care insurance claims. To plan for possible long term care needs in the future, see the Guide To Long Term Care.

Planning to buy long term care insurance at some point? Remember you must buy before the diagnosis. There are many conditions like Alzheimer’s that are uninsurable, here is a partial list: Are You Insurable?

Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.

Advertisements

Listening to their favorite music may help people with dementia

Nursing home residents with dementia had fewer behavior problems and were able to cut back on antipsychotic and antianxiety drugs when they listened often to their favorite music, according to a recent study.

Researchers at Brown University in Providence, RI studied over 25,000 residents in 196 nursing homes around the country. They used a program called Music & Memory which provides Alzheimer’s and dementia patients with individualized music playlists.

In a national campaign led by Medicare, gerontology experts and patient advocates are seeking non-pharmacologic interventions to reduce the use of antipsychotic and anti-anxiety medications.

In nursing homes that used the program, residents with dementia were more likely to discontinue antipsychotic and anti-anxiety medications, and engaged in fewer disruptive behaviors, than in homes where the music was not used. However, the study did not show a significant improvement in mood.06_ALIVE-INSIDE_Photo-Courtesy-of-BOND360

Caregivers and family members in a documentary called “Alive Inside,” say that personalized music helps even patients with highly advanced dementia. They observe that patients look more at ease after listening to their favorite music.

The researchers studied residents who had dementia and cognitive impairment, but were not in hospice care or comatose.

The rate of discontinuation of antipsychotics rose to 20.1 percent in 2013 compared to 17.6 percent in a similar period before. The discontinuation rate of anti-anxiety meds rose to 24.4 percent compared to 23.5 percent before. In the studied nursing homes that did not use the music program, the rates did not improve.

Behavioral improvement increased to 56.5 percent in program homes from 50.9 percent before the program. Improvement in the behavior of residents helps the treated patients, but also enhances the quality of life for residents around them. Also, improvement in patients’ behavior raises the morale of nursing home staff, and may reduce staff turnover.

The study was published in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. To improve their evaluation, Baier, Thomas and their colleagues plan to conduct a second study. 

Nursing home or memory care can be costly. Long term care insurance provides not only money for care but a support system for both those needing care and their families. For more about long term care and insurance visit GuideToLongTermCare

Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.

Have You Had The Conversation?

The Conversation Project is dedicated to helping people talk about their wishes for end of life care. They offer a collection of “Conversation Starter Kits” that you can download for free.

Talking with loved ones openly and honestly, before a medical crisis happens, ensures that everyone understands what matters most to each individual at the end of life. You can use a starter kit for yourself, or to help others communicate their wishes.

conversation2There are several different kits: for families and loved ones of people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias; how to choose a health care proxy and how to be a health care proxy; how to talk to your doctor or nurse about your wishes; and one for parents of a seriously ill child.

There are starter kits in English, Spanish, Mandarin, French, Hebrew, Korean, Russian, Vietnamese, and Hindi.

Organizations can purchase printed copies to distribute and add their logos.

The cost of care can be devastating, the national average is over $7,000 per month. To plan means to be insured before needing care, even before the diagnosis and not everyone can health-qualify for insurance (Can You Qualify?).

To find out more about long term care insurance see the Guide To Long Term Care

Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.

Blood test coming to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease?

A research team has found a method to detect biomarkers of Alzheimer’s disease in blood platelets. The test uses a ratio between normal and abnormal brain tau proteins to identify those with Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative conditions.

The researchers found that the presence of abnormal tau proteins corresponds with decreased brain volume in parts of the brain where characteristics of Alzheimer’s appear.
alz.jpg
A non-invasive test for Alzheimer’s disease would help detect people at risk before symptoms develop, and make prevention and early treatment possible.

A study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease in 2016 described using levels of the protein clusterin to ascertain which dementia patients are at risk of Alzheimer’s. Also, a 2015 study focused on using metabolites in saliva to detect cognitive impairment.

In 2016, 5.4 million Americans were affected by Alzheimer’s disease. For more information, consult the Alzheimer’s @Guide To Long Term Care.


Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.

Gamma oscillations for Alzheimer’s cure?

Recent experiments with mice found that their brains respond positively to a 40Hz pulse of light, the gamma frequency. The flashes of light brought about improvements in the function of the brain that plays an important part in Alzheimer’s disease. The technology might one day help treat Alzheimer’s disease in humans.

alz101b

The research was published in the journal Nature. A company called Cognito Therapeutics is pursuing further research to discover the effect of the pulses of light on human brains.

Meanwhile, at the request of the son of an Alzheimer’s sufferer, Samuel Sekandagu, a game developer with Overflow Games, produced a VR app which uses the Vive headset to deliver a 40Hz flash and 40Hz vibrations to the user’s eyes. The device must be evaluated for safety; the technique has not yet been tested on human beings, and some people are sensitive to flashing lights. But this new approach inspires hope for a non-invasive therapy in the future.

For more on Alzheimer’s disease, go to Guide To Long Term Care.

 


Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.

Using technology to keep track of Alzheimer’s patients

The city of Iruma in Japan has a new plan to keep track of people with Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Each patient will have a little square QR code that is attached to a fingernail or toenail. The code carries personal information including a unique identification number, an address, and a telephone number. The information will help families find loved ones who have wandered away. The adhesive chips remain attached to the nail for about two weeks, even if they get wet.

alzWandering is a common problem with Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Sometimes confusion and memory problems cause them to get lost even in familiar surroundings. Various technologies are available for keeping track of elderly loved ones. Some methods resemble technology used for tracking packages, children, or pets.

A variety of GPS tracking devices can help a user find the location of a lost person. Some enable the user to set up a safe zone, with notification when the patient goes outside a designated area. Some trackers can keep track of several people at the same time.

An SOS button is another common feature, so the person wearing it can call for help. Some devices facilitate audio conversation between the patient and caregiver.

Many of these devices are battery operated, but the batteries are rechargeable and may keep a charge for as long as three years. Some are connected with services that operate by monthly subscription.

GPS trackers can be worn around the ankle or wrist, or as a pendant. They can be locked on. One model looks like a wristwatch. A small personal transmitter emits an individualized tracking signal. GPS Smart Sole wearable technology puts satellite monitoring in a shoe insert to allow real time tracking of the wearer in areas with T-Mobile coverage.

Some GPS tracking watches provide international monitoring. An alarm will sound if the watch and GPS receiver get separated.

MedicAlert ID bracelets carry important medical information, and provide emergency hotline and family notification.

Cellular tracking uses cellular towers to determine the person’s location. The device used is the size of a credit card, and the user can follow its location with a mobile application.

The caregiver will usually carry a small tracking device, smart phone, tablet or web browser to monitor the patient. Some apps provide updates through email and text.

Hospitals can use special technology to monitor entry and exit doors. A door can be programmed to lock down when a tagged patient approaches. In a home setting, door alarms and locks, motion detectors, and intercoms can be helpful in monitoring a patient.
alz101b
By 2050, the number of people with Alzheimer’s disease worldwide could triple, from 5.1 million to 13.8 million. About six in ten will wander. Traditional search and rescue operations can cost thousands of dollars an hour, and take days. New technology makes it possible to find a person much faster and with fewer people needed in the search. The tracking technology saves a lot of money and helps rescue people sooner, before they may get hurt.

For information on insuring for Alzheimer’s and dementia care, see the Guide To Long Term Care


Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.

Groundbreaking ideas tested in high-tech Alzheimer’s facilities

A new concept is revolutionizing the care of patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

The idea is an assisted living facility that is like a time capsule for residents. The home’s interior is designed to look like a small town in the 1940s. Each resident’s room is a small house, with a front porch light that turns on by timer every night. The carpet outside the rooms looks like grass, with “sidewalks” leading from one room to another. In the ceiling, fiber optics change from sunlight to stars for day and night. Chirping bird sounds make the space feel like outdoors. There is a movie theater, a barbershop, a saloon and salon and supermarket.

The idea is to set up an environment that nurtures memories, promotes functional independence, and stimulates new learning. This charming environment can trigger fond nostalgic memories that will help the residents relax. It also creates the feeling of living in a community rather than an institution.

The innovative environments are created by Jean Makesh, an occupational therapist who is CEO of The Lantern Group. The Lantern Group has Ohio facilities in Chagrin Falls, Ashtabula, and Madison, with plans to expand: website.

6791senior-care-infographiccost-002

For more information see “Alzheimer’s on GuideToLongTermCare.com

Long Term Care Insurance Quote


.

.

.

.