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EasierLiving.com, LLC
297 High Street
Dedham, MA 02026
1.855.493.9856
info@easierliving.com

 

Prepare for Care: ALS

What to Expect

As time goes on, loved ones will need increasingly greater assistance. In the early stages, it is essential for you as a caregiver to support the person whom you look after as much as he or she is comfortable with. ALS is a life-changing condition that will make loved ones more dependent on your help over time. Encouraging them to live independently for as long as possible can improve their happiness.

Further down the line, ALS care products will become necessary - first to continue enabling loved ones to live independently, then to help you care for them. ALS does not impact cognitive functions or the abilities to see, hear, smell, taste and recognize touch. Because of this, it is not only critical to keep them safe and comfortable, but to develop and maintain a strong relationship with them. Caregivers can do this by:

  • Working as a team throughout the process.
  • Including the people they care for in care decisions.
  • Spending quality time together instead of solely as a caregiver.

Prepare Your Home

In the beginning, mobility aids and grab bars around the home can enable people with ALS to maneuver safely. Meanwhile, daily living products such as zipper pulls, shoe horns and other dressing aids can allow them to get ready for the day independently.

As the disease progresses, home support aids can ensure that loved ones are staying safe and comfortable. Investing in bedroom products such as bed rails can help those with ALS get up in the morning. Bathroom safety products for ALS such as a shower chairs and extendable sponge kits help them tend to everyday tasks. Dining aids can help people with ALS to continue enjoying family dinners.

When loved ones become bedridden, comfort and safety are of the utmost importance. ALS communication devices can ensure that they can convey their thoughts to you, while comfort pillows can tend to every part of their bodies. Orthotic supports can increase safety during the later stages, and mobility accessories will allow you to help them get to and from places with ease.

There are many tools and resources that you can use to maintain your loved ones’ happiness as ALS progresses. Investing in home care products allows you to create a safe haven where both you and the people you care for will always feel safe and comfortable. After all, caring for someone you love is about developing and maintaining the relationship, and one of the best ways to do it is to find the right support for you from the best home care items.

Condition Overview: ALS

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells that are essential for voluntary movements.

What is ALS?

ALS causes the motor neurons to degenerate, which stops them from being able to send impulses to the muscles. As a result, the muscles are not regularly used, eventually weaken and ultimately atrophy. As the disease progresses, people lose their ability to make voluntary movements. This includes leg and arm movements, and even breathing.

Who does ALS affect?

There are more than 12,000 individuals in the U.S. with ALS. It is more common among men and people between the ages of 60 and 69, but can affect anyone regardless of age, gender and ethnic background. A majority of ALS cases develop without any associated risks, including hereditary factors. In fact, only 5 to 10 percent of people who develop ALS inherit the disease genetically.

How common is misdiagnosis?

There is no definitive test that determines whether an individual has ALS. Many symptoms of ALS are present in other diseases and conditions, which increases the chances of a misdiagnosis.

Some common ailments that can lead to ALS-like symptoms include:

  • Lyme disease
  • West Nile virus
  • Polio
  • Human T-cell leukemia

In order to rule these other conditions out, it is essential for doctors to conduct a series of tests, which can include MRI scans and blood tests. Physicians use these tests to help them distinguish between ALS and other conditions.

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