In support of National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, NHA would like to raise awareness of the heart-breaking disease while also reminding the community of helpful resources. Below you will find helpful information, links, resources and games compiled to support the cause.
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Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other intellectual abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 50 to 80 percent of dementia cases.
What is Dementia:
Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life. Memory loss is an example. Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia.
Dementia is not a specific disease. It’s an overall term that describes a wide range of symptoms associated with a decline in memory or other thinking skills severe enough to reduce a person’s ability to perform everyday activities. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60 to 80 percent of cases. Vascular dementia, which occurs after a stroke, is the second most common dementia type. But there are many other conditions that can cause symptoms of dementia, including some that are reversible, such as thyroid problems and vitamin deficiencies.
Dementia is caused by damage to brain cells. This damage interferes with the ability of brain cells to communicate with each other. When brain cells cannot communicate normally, thinking, behavior and feelings can be affected.
Different types of dementia are associated with particular types of brain cell damage in particular regions of the brain. For example, in Alzheimer’s disease, high levels of certain proteins inside and outside brain cells make it hard for brain cells to stay healthy and to communicate with each other. The brain region called the hippocampus is the center of learning and memory in the brain, and the brain cells in this region are often the first to be damaged. That’s why memory loss is often one of the earliest symptoms of Alzheimer’s.
While most changes in the brain that cause dementia are permanent and worsen over time, thinking and memory problems caused by the following conditions may improve when the condition is treated or addressed:
- Medication side effects
- Excess use of alcohol
- Thyroid problems
- Vitamin deficiencies
What is Alzheimer’s:
Alzheimer’s is a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. Symptoms usually develop slowly and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.
Alzheimer’s is not a normal part of aging, although the greatest known risk factor is increasing age, and the majority of people with Alzheimer’s are 65 and older. But Alzheimer’s is not just a disease of old age. Up to 5 percent of people with the disease have early onset Alzheimer’s (also known as younger-onset), which often appears when someone is in their 40s or 50s.
Alzheimer’s has no current cure, but treatments for symptoms are available and research continues. Although current Alzheimer’s treatments cannot stop Alzheimer’s from progressing, they can temporarily slow the worsening of dementia symptoms and improve quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. Today, there is a worldwide effort under way to find better ways to treat the disease, delay its onset, and prevent it from developing.
- NHA’s Adult Day Health Center click here
- NHA’s Senior Center click here
- Home Health: Holistic Wellness/Services & Caregiver & Nursing Services www.homehealthsd.com 760 613-8468
Guide to Senior living and Care www.newlifestyles.com
How to apply for Medi-Cal and/or Low Income Health Program (LIHP) Apply on-line at www.benefitscalwin.org
ElderHelp: Caring Services in your home www.elderhelpofsandiego.org (619) 284-9281
Senior Emergency Alert System: www.livewellsandiego.org 858-483-5100
Southern Caregiver Resource Center, San Diego Office: 3675 Ruffin Road, Suite 230 San Diego, CA 92123, 858 268-4432
How can I get involved?
- Share your stories with us on our Facebook page
- To learn about NHA’s Adult Day Health Center click here
- To learn about NHA’s Senior Center click here
- To volunteer with ADHC or Senior Center click here
- To donate to ADHC and Senior Center click here
- Join the cause, visit http://www.alz.org/join_the_cause_join_the_cause.asp
Doctors always talk about the importance of daily exercise to stay healthy and ward off disease, but when it comes to fitness, are you doing enough to work out your brain?
A new study suggests you better. The study found people who who kept their brains active most of their lives by reading, writing, completing crossword puzzles, or playing challenging games were a lot less likely to develop brain plaques that are tied to Alzheimer’s disease. (Source: CBSNews.com, January 2012. For full article click here)