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Exercise Is Medicine

Right at Home encourages Alzheimer's patients to try something new.


exercise is medicine

Most Alzheimer's patients are given numerous drugs to ease the severity of their debilitating symptoms, but what if pills weren't the only way to manage symptoms?

Exercising Alzheimer's patients has numerous benefits, not only for the patient but also for their carers. Research shows that exercise helps to improve cognitive function, mood, functional capacity, willingness to cooperate, independence, and much more.

Better yet, exercise does not even have to be planned. Incidental exercise includes activities like walking to the shops instead of driving, or taking the stairs instead of the lift.

Being physically active improves blood flow to the brain, which helps to rejuvenate and reconnect brain neurons. Blood flow to the brain in Alzheimer's patients is particularly important for lessening the severity of symptoms and slowing the progression of the disease.

The American College of Sports Medicine has released a Position Stand on exercise for the elderly, including people suffering from dementia.

Their position states that aerobic exercise is particularly effective for patients, as it improves blood flow to the brain leading to improved cognition, releases feel-good hormones and improves functional capacity for every-day living. The College also highlights the importance of strength exercises, and flexibility maintenance. Pilates, tai chi and yoga are great ways to improve and maintain strength, balance and flexibility, plus they're low impact so will be easy on the joints.

Not only is exercise effective on a physical level, it also works wonders socially and emotionally. Getting a group together for a walk, swim or dance, means exercising while having fun, hence improving everyone's mood, including the carer's. It also means that carers can exercise a full group rather than supervising individual sessions.

In addition, it has been well documented that heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes and obesity are linked to the development and severity of Alzheimer's. If you are concerned about your loved ones, contact an exercise physiologist. They will be able to formulate exercise plans specific to the individual's needs. Alternatively, you can contact the care specialists at Right at Home Australia.

So, how can something as simple as exercise have so many benefits to you, your patient, and their family and friends? It's time to find out.

Founded in 1995, Right at Home offers in-home companionship and personal care, and assistance to seniors and disabled adults who want to continue to live independently and age in their home. Right at Home Australia is your local expert for issues related to caring for your loved ones, and is dedicated to keeping you informed about home care. With no admin or subscription fees Right at Home allows you to get more care from your package or budget. ​

To find out more, please give us a call on 1300 362 609 or visit our website. 

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