Summerset Assisted Living Center

Are You Up For a Fight?

Are You Up For A Fight?

In our last blog Dementia Risk and Race, we discussed groundbreaking research that revealed how race impacts a person’s risk of developing dementia in their lifetime. Results showed that of all ethnic groups studied, African-Americans had the highest risk (38%) of being diagnosed with dementia after age 65. In our opinion, it’s time to defy the odds of dementia risk for African-Americans. But, how? We needed to find out why African-American men and women have a higher risk of late-onset dementia. This question is important because our elderly population, those 65 years and older, is growing at a rapid pace. And, because the disease is strongly related to age, researchers estimate that the number of people with dementia is expected to increase significantly in the coming decades. When you consider the African-American population age 65 and over, this group’s incidence of dementia will increase when the group’s population more than doubles to 6.9 million by 2030 (alz.org). In order to properly prepare for this growing population, it’s critical to understand risk factors and how we can defeat them. For African-Americans, does it come down to age or are there other factors like genetics and environment? Genetics In general, there is a greater genetic risk of dementia in African-Americans. The cumulative risk of dementia among first-degree relatives of African-Americans who have dementia is 43.7%. This is a striking number but it may not be the largest risk factor (alz.org). Environment A person’s lifestyle has a noticeable impact on the likelihood of developing different conditions that correlate with dementia. Heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol can influence the risk of developing brain disease. Did you know that between the ages of 45 and 64, African American men have a 70% higher risk and Black women have a 50% greater risk of developing heart failure than Caucasian men and women? Even though African-Americans are more prone to developing forms of vascular disease, there are strategies for fighting dementia. Lifestyle Changes While genetics are out of our control, our daily decisions are not. Many doctors and researchers believe that by fighting vascular disease, we can fight the onset of dementia. A more active lifestyle and a healthier diet can all play an impactful role in preserving brain health.  Limiting refined sugars, processed foods, saturated fats, and sodium intake are all steps in the right direction. By limiting these foods, you can prevent the buildup of toxins that can lead to inflammation which can result in impaired cognitive function. Consuming healthy fats, fresh fruits, vegetables and lean meats are known to help reduce the risk of disease. Treatment & Care At Summerset Assisted Living Community, our nutritionists and nursing staff follow careful dietary and activity guidelines that keep our residents healthy and strong…strong enough to fight hereditary and environmental risks associated with both heart and brain disease. Learn more about our structured programs that make Summerset a resident’s home ways from home. Follow us on social media and sign-up for our blog to stay up to date. ______________________________________________________________________________ Your Home Away from Home | Located in Atlanta, Georgia,...

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Dementia Risk and Race

Dementia Risk and Race

What’s race got to do with it? When it comes to dementia, race and ethnicity have a measurable impact on a person’s risk of developing the brain disease. After a 14 year-long study, findings were released by Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association. Studying a sample of more than 274,000 members of Kaiser Permanente Northern California, researchers wanted to know the incidence of dementia among six different ethnic groups. Those groups were: African-Americans, Alaska Natives, Latino, Caucasian, Asian- Americans and Pacific Islanders. Findings Using previously determined dementia incidence rates and calculations of a person’s lifetime risk for developing the disease, researchers estimated the percentage of individuals without dementia before age 65 in each group who can expect to be diagnosed with dementia over the next 25 years. The results are astounding. (Refer to Graphic.) When you break that number down by gender, risk increases for African-American women. Dementia rates were 60% higher among African-American women than for Asian-American women. For men, that number jumps to 93% when comparing African-American men to Asian men. Some researchers believe that this increase in risk for African-Americans may be due to a genetic predisposition. Survival after diagnosis varies by race and ethnicity, as well. Caucasians tend to have the shortest survival rate of 3.1 years and Asian-Americans have the longest survival rate, 4.4 years. Latinos follow close behind at 4.1 years. Treatment and Care Armed with this information, many hope this will help improve prevention outreach and education to different ethnic groups, aid doctors in earlier detection and provide more effective treatment for specific groups of patients. At Summerset Assisted Living Community, our Memory Lane program is specifically designed to assist residents with memory impairments and offers special activities focused on providing appropriate amounts of stimulation and exercise. Learn more about Memory Lane. Now that you know the incidence of dementia among different ethnic groups, we’ll discuss why it may vary and how different methods may prevent the onset of dementia. Follow us on social media and sign-up for our blog to stay up to date. Your Home Away from Home | Located in Atlanta, Georgia, Summerset Assisted Living Community is focused on providing top quality, excellent, compassionate care for those we serve. Schedule a tour today! Sources: Alzheimer's & Dementia and Alzheimer’s Association...

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Are You in Denial?

Top 10 Signs of Dementia

“Where is my phone?” “What day is it again?” “I know you, but I just can’t seem to recall your name.” “I was in the middle of something, but I’ve lost my train of thought and…” In the moment, it may not seem like a big deal. Mom sometimes forgets where she placed her phone. Now and then, she thinks that it’s Monday, but it’s Tuesday. Recalling a person’s name can be a challenge for anyone. I won’t worry about Mom forgetting her niece’s name. That’s nothing to stress about, right? She’s getting older and just a little forgetful, that’s all. What is Dementia? Diagnosing dementia isn’t an easy task. According to the Mayo Clinic, dementia is not a specific disease but describes a group of symptoms such as declining memory or other thinking skills severe enough to impact a person’s ability to perform daily tasks. Signs of Dementia While memory loss is one key factor in diagnosing dementia, memory loss alone does not always correlate with dementia. Researchers have found that in addition to memory loss, there are several other warning signs that can lead to early detection. Did you know that a change in mood and withdrawal from work and social activities are signs of dementia? According to the Alzheimer’s Association, there are ten signs of dementia (Refer to Graphic). To confirm if your loved one has dementia or simply has declining memory loss, it’s critical to visit a doctor to make a determination. If a doctor diagnoses your loved one with dementia, you will learn that there are several types. Alzheimer’s disease is the most prevalent type of dementia. In fact, studies show that it accounts for 60% to 80% of cases. Other types are: Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB) Vascular Dementia Mixed Dementia Parkinson’s Disease Frontotemporal Dementia Creutzfeldt - Jakob disease Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus Huntington’s disease Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome  Care At Summerset Assisted Living Community, we welcome clients of all needs. As part of our entrance process, all potential residents must undergo a full medical evaluation so that our staff can properly meet their care needs. SALC’s Memory Lane program features specific techniques for assisting residents with memory impairments.The program also offers special activities focused on providing appropriate amounts of stimulation and exercise. Learn more about Memory Lane. Now that you know the signs and types of dementia, we’ll discuss the prevalence of dementia in ethnic populations in our next post. Follow us on social media and follow our blog to stay up to date. Your Home Away from Home | Located in Atlanta, Georgia, Summerset Assisted Living Community is focused on providing top quality, excellent, compassionate care for those we serve. Schedule a tour today! ...

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