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Alzheimer Disease

Alzheimer's disease is a progressive neurologic disorder responsible for the dying of brain cells and shrinking the brain (atrophy). It is the most common reason for dementia. Dementia is a persistent decline in behavioral, thinking, and social skills that impact the ability of a person to work independently. The initial signs of the disease may include forgetting recent conversations and events. With disease progress, a patient may lose his ability to work on daily tasks and suffer from severe brain loss. 

What are the possible symptoms of Alzheimer's disease? 

Due to this disease, a patient is likely to experience the following symptoms:

Each human being may experience occasional memory loss. Still, the loss of memory related to Alzheimer's disease worsens and persists simultaneously, affecting the function at home or work. The people with this disease may:

  • Forget daily conversation, events, appointments, etc. 

  • Misplacing possessions routinely and often putting these in the illogical locations

  • Feel lost in the familiar places 

  • Forget names of surrounding objects and even family members 

  • Inability to find proper words for everyday objects thought expression or be a part of conversations

Reasoning and thinking - The disease may cause difficulty thinking and concentrating, especially regarding abstract concepts like numbers. Multitasking seems complicated, and challenges might be faced to manage bills, checkbook balances, and finances. 

Personality and behavioral changes - Brain changes in Alzheimer's disease can impact behavior and moods and pose problems, including mood swings, depression, sleeping habits changes, inhibitions loss, etc. 

Preserved skills - Preserved skills might involve listening to something, reading a book, singing, dancing, storytelling, or doing crafts. These skills might start deteriorating while the disease progresses. 

Risk factors associated with Alzheimer disease 

  • Increasing age might be a possible risk factor for Alzheimer's disease. It might not be a part of normal aging, but by the time a person grows older, he is likely to develop this disease. 

  • Family genetics and history may also be possible risks for developing Alzheimer's disease. Most of the mechanisms based on this disease remain unexplained and complex to understand. 

  • Poor sleep patterns may also increase Alzheimer's disease.

  • Heart health and lifestyle are also possible risk factors related to Alzheimer's disease. These might include obesity, lack of exercise, high blood pressure, poor control of type 2 diabetes. 

Causes 

Tangles and plagues role 

These are defined as two abnormal structures such as tangles and plagues, and both are considered main suspects in killing and damaging nerve cells. 

Tangles are defined as twisted fibers of other tau proteins that gather inside cells. 

Plagues are known as protein fragment deposits referred to as beta-amyloid that gather in the space present between the nerve cells. 

Diagnosis based on Alzheimer disease 

Our medical practitioners check on the symptoms such as cognitive decline, memory loss, changes in behavior, etc., that might affect a patient's ability to perform daily chores. Family and friends might notice dementia symptoms before the patient. A single test is not available for this disease; a healthcare provider may ask to perform different festivals such as urine or blood tests, neurological function tests for reflexes, senses, and balance. A patient may also be asked to get genetic testing, MRI scan, or CT scan of the brain. 

Various assessment tools are present for assessing cognitive function. For a few cases, genetic testing can be considered more appropriate. 

Treatment offered for Alzheimer's disease. 

While there is no permanent cure, the symptoms can be controlled, improving a person's life quality and their caregivers and family. 

Dementia care can be offered with the following crucial elements: 

  • daycare programs and activities 

  • effective management of the conditions associated with Alzheimer 

  • support services involvement

Medicines for cognitive symptoms 

  • Drugs for modifying disease are not available for Alzheimer's, but a few options may ease the symptoms and help in improving life quality. Drugs named cholinesterase inhibitors may relieve cognitive symptoms such as confusion, memory loss, judgment issues, and altered thinking processes. These drugs can help in improving neural brain communication and slow the symptom's progress. 

Behavioral and emotional treatments

The behavioral and emotional changes associated with Alzheimer's disease might be challenging to handle. Patients may experience excessive depression, anxiety, restlessness, irritability, sleep disorders, etc. These might result from some medications, problems in vision or hearing, and discomfort. By evaluating the associated triggers, such behaviors might be eased with environmental changes such as changing clothes and bathing for a fresh feeling. With environmental changes, a person may feel secure, comfortable, and peaceful. 

For a few cases, doctors may recommend certain medications, such as:

  • antipsychotic drugs for delusions, hallucinations, or aggression

  • antidepressants for treating low mood

  • antianxiety drugs 

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