Opioids and Alzheimer’s

While we commonly focus on the cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer’s, it should also be noted that pain is also a common feature of the disease. Approximately 50% of people with dementia experience substantial amounts of pain. In approximately 40% of them, opioids are required
to manage that pain.

At this year’s Alzheimer’s Association International Conference, researchers from the UK and Norway presented an analysis of the side effects of using opioids in people with advanced dementia.
They found that such adverse side effects as confusion, sedation, and personality change were significantly worse in Alzheimer’s patients who received opioids, rather than a placebo. One opioid in particular, buprenorphine, was found to produce three times the level of adverse effects.

We at Hamilton Grove Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, in Hamilton, NJ, decry such treatment of this vulnerable population. At Hamilton Grove, we have created a unique environment and care program that is specifically designed to address the medical, social, and recreational needs of individuals suffering from Alzheimer’s or other cognitive disorders — an environment and care program that maximizes patients’ dignity and quality of life through a structured daily routine, mind-stimulating activities, and excellent social interaction. We provide a calm, soothing, and safe atmosphere; nutritious meals that assure proper food intake and hydration; and only the most appropriate behavior management.

Our Alzheimer’s Unit is situated in a separate, secure wing to ensure the safety and well-being
of our residents. The wide corridors are homelike and easy to navigate, promoting a sense of familiarity and security.

The Alzheimer’s unit caregivers are specially trained to care for memory impaired residents. With their extra sensitivity and understanding of the condition and its impact, our caregivers treat each resident with dignity and love.

A specialized care program helps memory-impaired patients maximize their cognitive function. The activities program is also specifically designed to enhance sociability and enjoyment of life.

For patients in more advanced stages, the Alzheimer’s Unit offers innovative sensory therapies, including audiovisual stimuli, artful pastoral scenes, as well as aromatherapy, promoting a sense of calm.

The Alzheimer’s Unit features a bright and cheerful solarium where residents love to relax and enjoy the sun. The solarium opens to a beautifully landscaped enclosed courtyard where residents relish the fresh air and lovely outdoor surroundings.

The Hamilton Grove Alzheimer’s Unit provides people with Alzheimer’s with unparalleled care, and their family members with peace of mind.

Read our reviews on caring.com, wellness.com, and senioradvisor.com to hear what our residents and their families have to say.

Or better yet, come see for yourself: Contact us to schedule a tour by calling 609-588-5800 or by clicking here.

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