World Alzheimer Day: A Day to Educate, Raise Awareness, and Help Those Affected

Posted On Oct 31, 2022

Dr. Shrawan Kumar Chaudhary

Consultant - Neurology

Manipal Hospitals-Jaipur

neurology hospital in Jaipur

On September 21st, people worldwide will be celebrating World Alzheimer's Day. This day is a day to educate, raise awareness and help those affected by Alzheimer's.

Alzheimer's is a progressive, irreversible brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills. It starts with short-term memory loss and gradually leads to problems with language, decision-making, understanding visual images, and everyday tasks such as paying bills or driving.

Dementia is a catch-all term for several diseases that severely affect memory, thinking, and social abilities to interfere with daily life. It is not a specific disease but a collective term for memory loss syndrome, which may include Alzheimer's as well.

The number of people living with Dementia in India is expected to touch 7.6 million within the next ten years, according to a report released by the World Health Organization (WHO). Globally, 55 million people are living with dementia today, which may double every 20 years if no strict action exists. Manipal Hospitals is a trusted name for Alzheimer's disease treatment in Jaipur. Book an appointment now as we have the best Alzheimer’s disease doctors in Jaipur, who can guide you well about the treatment options.  

What is Alzheimer's Disease?

Alzheimer's disease is a neurologic condition causing gradual shrinking of the brain and death of brain cells. Alzheimer's is the leading cause of dementia. From forgetting recent memories to developing severe memory impairment and loss of the ability to carry out everyday tasks. The symptoms of Alzheimer's disease vary from person to person. They generally include: 

  • Memory loss that worsens over time

  • Difficulty thinking clearly

  • Problems with language

  • Difficulty performing familiar tasks

  • Changes in mood or behaviour

  • Inability to see or hear well

  • Poor judgment 

  • Forgetting the names of loved ones

  • Loss of initiative

There are currently no treatments that can slow or stop Alzheimer's disease. However, medications can help manage some symptoms.

What causes Alzheimer's disease?

The exact causes of Alzheimer's disease are unknown, but it tends to be an age-related disease. The primary cause of Alzheimer's appears to be a buildup of plaques in the brain. These plaques contain proteins responsible for the communication between brain cells (neurons). When these proteins fail to function normally, they disrupt the work of neurons and trigger a series of toxic events that eventually lead to neuron death.

Genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors may trigger the process of Alzheimer's in most people. Scientists are looking at plaques and tangles, the two types of proteins that form in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease.

Plaques are deposits of beta-amyloid fragments, fragments of a more significant protein.

Tangles are formations of tau proteins, which play a part in a neuron's internal support and transport system to carry nutrients.

In Alzheimer's disease, plaques and tangles disrupt the transport system in neurons, thus leading to the death of brain cells.

Risks factors associated with Alzheimer's Disease

  • The risk of Alzheimer's disease increases with age. 

  • If a parent or sibling has Alzheimer's, there is a higher risk of developing it. Consult at the earliest with a neurologist in Jaipur for the best treatment.

  • People with Down syndrome are also more likely to have Alzheimer's disease.

  • Air pollution particulates can speed up the degeneration of the nervous system.

  • People with severe head trauma are more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease later in life.

  • Excess alcohol increases the risk of dementia, as does poor sleep quality. 

  • Factors associated with heart diseases like lack of exercise, obesity, high cholesterol, high BP and smoking can be risk factors for Alzheimer's disease and poor diet choices such as too much sodium or too little fibre!

How to take care of Alzheimer's Patients

It can be challenging to ensure the safety of a loved one with Alzheimer's disease. Here are some tips that can help you protect your loved one:

  1. To avoid losing valuables, hold the keys, wallets, and mobile phones in the same place at home.

  2. Keep track of medicine dosages with a daily checklist.

  3. Please ensure that your patient carries a mobile phone with location capability so we can track their location.

  4. Add the important phone numbers to the phone.

  5. Alarms are a great way to ensure your loved one is safe while in your care. 

  6. Try to create habits by ensuring tasks happen at the same time.

  7. People with Alzheimer's have trouble navigating clutter, and removing excess furniture and rugs from the house will make all the difference!

  8. Handrails can help people who are experiencing memory loss and balance issues.  With handrails, they can navigate stairs safely, and they can also prevent falls in the bathroom.

  9. Reduce the number of mirrors as they can be confusing and stressful to someone with Alzheimer's. 

  10. We must help the person with Alzheimer's carry an ID card that also says they have this disease. The card will help other people understand what's happening and keep a watchful eye on the person with Alzheimer's so they don't get lost or hurt themselves.

Treatment Options for a Person with Alzheimer's

There are several treatment options for a person with Alzheimer's. 

  • Vitamin supplements can help maintain the body and prevent the ill effects of plaque deposition.

  • Lifestyle modifications like regular exercise and good diet habits 

  • Social interactions 

  • Creative work 

  • Timely interaction with the doctor.

Manipal Hospitals, Jaipur, offers the best care for managing Alzheimer's. We are here with a team of neurologists, psychiatrists, neuropsychologists, and other experts who chart out the best treatment course for the patients. We offer complete assessment and management for the entire spectrum of neurological problems. Manipal Hospitals is considered the best neurology hospital in Jaipur and has modern facilities like EEG, Nerve Conduction Study, EMG, Lumbar Puncture, Stroke Management, Neuro Intensive Care, Memory Clinic, Paediatric Neurology Services, and more. 

As the facts of Alzheimer's disease are becoming more and more common, we can all do our part to help those affected. Educating ourselves and spreading awareness can lead people towards proper treatment and support. We celebrate September 21st to raise awareness for Alzheimer's disease.

As you've read in this article, there are currently no treatments that can completely cure Alzheimer's. We can only treat its symptoms and improve the quality of life for patients. To help those affected by Alzheimer's, we must seek timely medical support from the best neurology doctor in Jaipur.

Dr. Shrawan Kumar Chaudhary

Consultant - Neurology

Manipal Hospitals, Jaipur

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