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How Meaningful Touch can Benefit Alzheimer’s Patients
Taking care of Alzheimer’s patient is never easy. The treatment of this disease focuses much on ensuring a high quality of life because a cure has not yet been found. Although you might be doing your best, at times you can feel that your efforts are not making much difference. But, there is this one therapy that can make a huge difference in the well-being of Alzheimer’s patients and that is touch. According to research, there is much power attached to human touch. It is the sense that fetus and infants acquire. Contrary to other people’s thinking, touch becomes more powerful and important as people grow older. The following is an insight into how Alzheimer’s patients can benefit from the power of touch.
A simple hug from a person close to you does not just put you on a good mood but also protects you from certain infections. Following various studies, hugging has been found to be effective in preventing diseases in people suffering from stress. Improved pain, decreased blood pressure and lowered hear rates are some of the physical health benefits of touch.
Communication channels can easily open through the power of touch. One of the major effects of Alzheimer’s is that it breaks down the patient’s ability to interact with others. With the continuous fading of their memories and language ability, communication slowly becomes very hard. Touch is among the most effective channels for communication. It is an efficient channel for individuals to communicate their feelings.
Touch has the ability to reduce the effects of depression and anxiety. People living with Alzheimer’s go through major changes in their lifestyle. This means that they end up relying on the people close to them to do their basic duties. These changes often cause depression and anxiety. The research was once done to find out how therapeutic touch related to agitated behavior in people suffering from Alzheimer’s. It was realized that there was less agitation in patients who get regular touch therapy. The reason behind this could be that touch releases a hormone known as oxytocin which is responsible or the feeling of well-being, trust and happiness. Massage has also been associated with the reduction of stress levels in the body.
When caring for Alzheimer’s patients, there are many thongs you will need to do that involve physical touch. They include tying shoes, cleaning up and even getting dressed. Going above essentials, providing a meaningful touch proves to be effective in fostering strong connections. In this case, you can choose to hug, massage, offer beauty treatments, touch the arms or ensure hand contact. But before providing this service, be mindful of the boundaries and get consent from your loved one.