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Understanding Alzheimer's Disease

"Detecting it at an early stage"

By: Kevin Bluhm

Understanding Dementia-Detecting it at an early Stage  

Dementia is the term used to refer to memory loss caused by the brain’s physical changes. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia and changes caused by memory loss lead to differed perceptions, altered relationships and a shift in priorities. This condition can be treated or reversed and the memory of the victim improved effectively only if detected and treatment is administered at an early stage of attack. 

Signs and Symptoms 

To detect it signs and symptoms you have to be very watchful so as not to confuse it with normal aging signs, this is because even though it affects the elderly dementia is noticeable with reduced communication and learning, decline in remembering and solving problems. The following are the collection of symptoms resulting from trauma of the brain. You might watch the person likely to suffer from dementia is: 

1.        Asking the same questions repeatedly 

2.       Lost and becoming disoriented in familiar places 

3.       Cannot follow directions 

4.       Disoriented as to the day’s date and time 

5.       Cannot recognize familiar people or sometimes confused 

6.       Neglects personal safety, hygiene and nutrition 

Causes of Dementia 

Our brain is like a miraculous machine that functions and retains it vital connection throughout our lives but its mass and speed declines due to aging. It’s caused when neurons that maintain the brain connectivity die as a result of inflammation, injury and disease. There has been immense research done to study its cause and specialists believe that a combination of hereditary, environmental and lifestyle factors are the main cause. Therefore, dementia can be caused by: 

·       Medical conditions. There are some medical conditions that gradually attack the brain cells and connections leading to death of the neurons. They include Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, or Huntington's disease.    

·       Strokes. Strokes disrupt the flow of oxygen into the brain therefore the brain will not get the right nutrients. To reduce stroke prevent high blood pressure, treat heart attacks and STOP smoking.  

·       Poor nutrition. Dehydration and consumption of drugs may lead to massive memory loss and an old age. Some conditions like insulin resistance, vitamin deficiencies and metabolic disorders may lead to dementia too if not treated properly. 

·       Brain injuries. A trauma or repeated brain injuries may lead to loss of cognitive skills and impaired memory but this depends on the location of brain injured.  

·       Infection of the central nervous system. Infections and illnesses like HIV and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease affect the central nervous system leading to the death of neurons that connect the brains. This is the main cause of memory loss since the brain is responsible for memory.   

Treating Dementia 

Good health habits like good nutrition, not taking drugs and treating of other health conditions like high blood pressure and also stimulating your brain through exercise will prevent dementia. Physical exercise is not just good for your body but also exercises your brain and keeps memory loss at bay. It’s recommendable to always exercise no matter your age.