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Simplifying Helps those with Alzheimer's Disease

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www.ProHealth.com • May 2, 2003


Alzheimer's disease can make it difficult to accomplish tasks like cooking, making a phone call or taking a bath. Modifying the home environment can make it safer and easier for loved ones to function at home. Mayo Clinic on Alzheimer's Disease offers these suggestions for simplifying your living space.

-- Keep emergency phone numbers, including doctor and family contacts, by all telephones.

-- Store items used most often in easy-to-reach places.

-- Make sure there is a first-aid kit, fire extinguisher and working smoke alarms in the home.
-- Keep poisons and medications out of sight.

-- Limit stove use. If there is a safety concern, throw the circuit breaker, unplug the stove or remove stove knobs.

--Adjust the water heater to 120 degrees to avoid burns.

Some studies show that most people with Alzheimer's will experience at least one fall during the disease process. To reduce your loved one's risk of falling, you should consider the following:

-- Remove throw rugs; keep stairways free of clutter; and use nightlights in hallways, bathrooms and bedrooms.

-- Provide adequate lighting in hard-to-see areas.

-- Avoid moving furniture, as this may disorient the person.

-- Move electrical cords under furniture or tape them to walls.



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