As a physical assessment, ADLs do not always show if a person needs care.
More elaborate functional assessment instruments, such as the OARS Multi-Dimensional Functional Assessment Questionnaire 5 have also been widely used to determine the incidence and prevalence of functional limitations as it relates to mental impairments.
Many senile claimants can perform all ADLs, but they need constant supervision while performing them. A 1991 study in The Gerontologist reports more than one-third of the cognitively impaired elderly living in the community has no ADL impairments.
Cognitive Impairment refers to the deterioration or loss of intellectual capacity evidenced by memory loss, disorientation and/or the inability to reason. It is often caused by Alzheimer’s disease or similar forms of senility or irreversible dementia.
It’s America’s bogeyman for the new millennium, Alzheimer’s.
Fifty years ago, when baby boomers started arriving, it was not a problem.
Twenty years ago it was rare.
Today, more than 4 million Americans have Alzheimer’s or a related dementia.
When we baby boomers reach the age of greatest risk, 14 million Americans will have the disease.
Why? The short answer is we used to die before Alzheimer’s could kill us, American’s average life expectancy has soared from 47 in 1900 to the current 78.
Now, the fastest growing age group is 85 and older.