Alzheimer’s disease is something with no known cure, so it is often presented as something that advances over time without any checks once it has been diagnosed. If an elderly person has it, the family expects it to keep progressing, and they know it could eventually become fatal.

However, while this is partially true, it leaves out a key point: You can slow this disease down. This is especially true for those whose cases are simply mild or even moderate. It does not have to progress as fast as expected. Many people take steps to slow it and add many happy months or even years to their lives.

For instance, some studies have linked Alzheimer’s and mental stimulation. An elderly person who does puzzles, reads books, plays games, talks with others and takes on similar “mentally challenging tasks” could see the disease slow down for them. They may not be able to cure it, but that does not mean that they can’t do anything or that they just have to accept it.

The flip side of this, though, is that it underscores the problems with nursing home neglect. An elderly person who is neglected and essentially ignored in the home will not have the type of mental stimulation they need to slow down this disease. That neglect could make it progress more quickly and could shorten their life.

Do you think that your loved one has been neglected or that this is happening right now? The ramifications are serious. Make sure you know what steps you can take to protect them during this difficult time.