Senior Health

Alzheimer’s Disease

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, is an irreversible, progressive brain disease that slowly destroys memory and other intellectual abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. It’s estimated that over four million Americans suffer from this condition, which usually begins after age 60.

What are the symptoms?

  • Short-term memory loss
  • Difficulty performing familiar tasks
  • Problems with language
  • Disorientation to time and place
  • Misplacing things
  • Rapid, unpredictable mood swings
  • Changes in personality
  • Lack of motivation
  • Loss of ability to recognize who people are, even people well known to the individual, such as his or her child or spouse, when the disease progresses to a severe stage

What support is offered?

At this time, there is no cure for Alzheimer's, no way of slowing down the progression of this disease, and no treatment available to reverse the deterioration of Alzheimer's disease. There are some medications available to assist in managing some of the most troubling symptoms of Alzheimer's disease such as depression, behavioral disturbance, and sleeplessness. In managing the disease, physical exercise and social activity are important, as are proper nutrition, health maintenance and a calm and well-structured environment.

The Ginny and Bob Shell Alzheimer's Center at Parkway Village is the only free-standing center in Arkansas devoted to people with Alzheimer's disease. The 32-bed, 30,000 square foot facility provides a compassionate place for residents to receive beneficial social interaction, medical care for chronic health conditions and support groups for both the patient and family.

Baptist Health also offers an Alzheimer’s Support Group at the Ginny and Bob Shell Alzheimer’s Center at Parkway Village. For more information, please call (501) 202-6105.