Alzheimer’s is a disease that develops in the brain and stop functioning when they lose connections to each other, and eventually die. It is a progressive, irreversible disorder of the brain and the most common form of dementia.
Alzheimer’s affects the most crucial parts of the brain that are involved in thinking, remembering, problem-solving, using language, and other cognitive skills. It substantially worsens a person’s ability to carry out typical day to day activities. Alzheimer’s can also affect personality and mood. People with this disorder may become confused, suspicious, agitated, depressed, dreadful, cranky. When the disease worsens, most of the parts in the brain get damaged, including those involved with fundamental bodily functions, like talking and walking. Many researchers are working to understand the biological pathways behind this disease, with the goal of finding new a better drug a non-drug options.
ARE DEMENTIA AND ALZHEIMER’S THE SAME THING?
Even Though the terms are used interchangeably, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease have nothing to do with each other. Dementia is not a specific disease; rather is a general term that describes any decline in brain function that affects memory, language, focus, judgment, or visual perception, and it is something very serious enough to interfere with daily functions. There are numerous types of dementia, and the most common is Alzheimer’s disease.
Here are some of the types of dementia that include:
- LEWY BODY DEMENTIA : It is a disease that is marked by the development of abnormal protein clumps, called Lewy bodies, in brain cells.
- VASCULAR DEMENTIA : It is dementia that commonly develops after blood vessels become damaged or blocked, impeding the flow of oxygen a vital nutrient to brain cells.
- FRONTOTEMPORAL DISORDERS : This disorder is also called frontotemporal dementia; it is a result of nerve – cell damage in the front and side regions of the brain ( frontal and temporal lobes)
EARLY SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
When a certain amount of forgetfulness happens for people, it becomes an annoying aspect of aging. But the memory loss that is often is the first and foremost symptom of Alzheimer’s disease. Memory loss can signify Alzheimer’s when it’s severe enough to disrupt daily life. The person might ask about things again and again. When people get diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, they have trouble keeping track of bills, following familiar recipes, or completing other multistep tasks that were once second nature.
TREATMENT OF ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE
Out of the ten leading causes of death in the United States, Alzheimer’s is the only disease that has no cure. But sill, there are also treatments that can slow down the cognitive decline for a time and provide relief for symptoms like anxiety and depression. Doctors usually recommend nondrug approach first. Counseling, involvement in a support group, and activities like a dance that bring social, mental, and physical engagement have a positive effect on body and mind. And eventually, to balance doctors also prescribe medication. The Food and Drug Administration( FDA) has approved drugs for treating the cognitive symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease i.e.,cholinesterase inhibitors (Aricept, Exelon, Razadyne) and memantine (Namenda) — to treat the cognitive symptoms (memory loss, confusion, and problems with thinking and reasoning).