- Alzheimer's causes memory loss and cognitive decline
- Alzheimer's makes it difficult for the patient to recall events
- Exercise can help you slow down the progression of Alzheimer's
World Alzheimer's Day is observed on 21 September every year. This day tries to create awareness about Alzheimer's. It also attempts to reduce the stigma and myths that surround Alzheimer's. Alzheimer's disease is a form of dementia which causes memory loss and cognitive decline. It is the most common type of dementia. It becomes difficult for a Alzheimer's patient to recall events. Some healthy practices can help in controlling the risk of Alzheimer's and reduce the progression of the disease. Here are some simple modifications which might help.
Ways to slow down the progression of Alzheimer's disease
1. Reduce stress
Stress is harmful for your overall health. The tight schedules followed these days can increase the level of stress. Chronic stress can also affect the functioning of your brain. It can increase the risk of Alzheimer's and dementia. You need to follow practices which can help you reduce stress. Try exercising, meditation or yoga to manage stress. You should also take small breaks throughout the day to control stress level. Ensure proper sleep to give enough rest to your brain.
Exercise is beneficial for your overall health. It is good for Alzheimer's patients as well. Recently a study published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease also stated that regular exercise can slow down the progression of Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Madhukar Bhardwaj, Consultant Neurology explains, "Exercise and moderate physical activities are good for patients with Alzheimer's as it helps in dopamine, seratonine and neuroplasticity is also boosted. Therefore, someone with Alzheimer's should regularly workout."
3. Try socialising
Socialising will not let the Alzheimer's patient feel lonely. Interaction with people can lift your mood and encourage you at the same time. You will get to share your feelings and get to listen to other people. More engagement will help you get over the condition and lead a normal life.
4. Ensure proper sleep
Dr. Madhukar also explains the relation between Alzheimer's and proper sleep, "Sleep is extremely important for any human being, however, ones suffering from Alzheimer's find it extremely difficult to sleep. This increases their irritability and affects their memory even more. Therefore, practicing some exercises and yoga would calm down the nerves and boost sleep."
"Alzheimer's is moreover the abnormal deposition of pathogenic amyloid proteins in certain areas of the brain leading to abnormal function. There are few drugs that help in reducing or slowing down the deposition and therefore, reduce the effect of the pathogenic amyloids. There is apparently no treatment of that can completely cure the problem but yes, the available enzyme inhibitors that are used for treatment slow down the process and give the patients some relief. Apart from medication some Chinese herbs are proven to be beneficial and few trials show their action in improving memory function," Dr. Madhukar added.
(Dr. Madhukar Bhardwaj is a Consultant, Neurology at Aakash Healthcare Super Speciality Hospital, Dwarka)
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