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Alzheimer’s Disease

Overview

Alzheimer’s is a progressive neurological disease that directly targets the part of the brain where thought, memory and language are located. It is the most common cause of dementia, normally affects older individuals and often worsens with age.

There are several stages that often occur as the disease advances. These seven different stages illustrate the progression from mild to moderate to severe:

  • No outward impairment: The person doesn’t show any symptoms, but some cranial degradation may appear on a PET scan.
  • Mild symptoms: Only someone who knows the individual well may recognize signs like misplacing items or forgetting certain words, but nothing interferes with their independence.
  • Mild decline: Thinking and reasoning are becoming impaired, and the individual begins to forget information they just read or the names of people they just met. Alzheimer’s can officially be diagnosed in this stage.
  • Moderate decline: Someone in this stage may struggle to complete more complex tasks like cleaning the house.
  • Moderately severe decline: Day-to-day activities become more complicated, like dressing themselves for the seasons. The affected individual may occasionally forget where they are.
  • Severe decline: Delusions begin as the person may recognize faces but not the names. Feeding themselves or going to the bathroom may now require assistance.
  • Very severe decline: In this final stage, those with Alzheimer’s depend on caregivers for daily care, including eating, walking, sitting down, etc.

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What Causes Alzheimer’s Disease?

Today’s researchers and doctors do not know enough to pinpoint a specific cause of Alzheimer’s disease. Everyone’s initiation of the disease can be different, making it difficult to predict who will experience it. However, the leading cause of symptoms is the same — an abnormal buildup of amyloid plaques and tau tangles in the brain.

There have been cases of the following factors causing this disease:

  • Age: Natural aging can trigger Alzheimer’s disease. This is the most common risk for the disease.
  • Genetics: Your family history may increase your risk of Alzheimer’s. However, having this disease in your genetic history doesn’t guarantee you will develop it.
  • Brain damage: Suffering from brain damage in traumatic events such as a car accident can cause early onset Alzheimer’s.

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Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease

You can look for a few signs if you sense you or your loved one may be at risk for Alzheimer’s, such as:

  • Repeating questions.
  • Getting lost in a familiar place.
  • Struggling to complete daily tasks.
  • Losing items constantly without being able to retrace steps.
  • Experiencing increased agitation.
  • Exhibiting personality changes.

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Best Treatment for Alzheimer’s

Best Treatment for Alzheimer's

Best Treatment for Alzheimer’s

While there is currently no cure for this disease, scientists have discovered some treatments that may help prevent the condition from worsening quickly, including:

  • Activities that stimulate the senses.
  • Nutritious diet.
  • Social engagement.
  • Education.
  • Quality sleep.
  • Physical activity.

Treating Alzheimer’s can be tricky, especially once it has started progressing. The main priority in caring for patients with this disease is to ensure they are safe and comfortable.

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Common questions about Alzheimer’s.

Alzheimer’s disease progresses differently for each patient. Patients are believed to live on average about 8 years. But this is not an exact figure. For example, people with dementia who were diagnosed with the disease in old age live from 7 to 15 years.

A general practitioner or a family doctor is a specialist you need to visit in case of developed Alzheimer’s disease. They will diagnose and make an exact diagnosis. If it’s necessary, the doctor will refer you to a neurologist or geriatrician (a doctor who treats senile diseases).

In fact, the causes of Alzheimer’s disease are unknown. There are 4 theories that compete with each other. Scientists agree on one thing: the risk group includes people over 65 and people with a hereditary predisposition.

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Other common neurological conditions.

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Are you or a loved one interested in learning more information about early-stage Alzheimer’s treatment or Alzheimer’s disease symptoms? Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our neurologists in Queens or Brooklyn, NY.

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