What Is Alzheimer’s Disease? Its Symptoms And Causes

Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer’s disease refers to a progressive neurological disorder that causes your brain cells to die due to the shrinking of the brain (atrophy). It is the common cause that leads to dementia. Do you know about dementia?

Many people often confuse dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. A consistent decline in behavioral, thinking, and social skills that disturb the ability of a person to perform proper functions is dementia. These diseases have some early signs.

The signs include forgetting of recent conversations or events. As the disease continues, the person with Alzheimer’s loses the ability to perform everyday tasks and develops an impairment of memory. Medications help to slow symptoms’ progression.

But those medications are temporary. Treatments help people with this disease to maintain independence and enhance functions for a specific time duration. Different services and programs are developed to help people who are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

Professionals also properly guide their caregivers through these services and programs. No treatment can completely alter the process of Alzheimer’s disease in your brain. This disease can not be recovered properly.

The disease has some advanced stages that result in loss of brain functions such as infection, malnutrition, and dehydration that can cause the death of a person. 

Symptoms Of Alzheimer’s Disease

Following are the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease that play a vital role in the development of complications.

Loss Of Memory

The core symptom of Alzheimer’s disease is the loss of memory. As the disease progresses in people, they face severe impairment of memory. The other symptoms of the disease start developing too. The person with Alzheimer’s may be aware of this disease at first.

The reason is that it causes difficulty in organizing and remembering thoughts. Any friend of the person with Alzheimer’s or relative is more likely to notice the symptoms. Changes in the brain that are associated with this disease cause memory trouble.

Memory loss that is associated with this disease is worse and persists for a longer time. It affects the ability of a person to function at home. People who are suffering from Alzheimer’s show the following symptoms.

  • Repeating sentences or questions again and again
  • Forgetting events and appointments of conversations, and inability to remember that information later
  • Misplace possessions in a routine that put them in locations that are illogical
  • Getting lost in the places that are most familiar
  • Forgetting the name of everyday objects and family members
  • Face trouble in the selection of right words to express thoughts, identify objects, and take part in different conversations

Thinking And Reasoning

Alzheimer’s disease cause problems for people in thinking and concentrating. For example, they may become unable to concentrate on specific abstract concepts like numbers. It is difficult to multitask for people with this disease. 

They face challenges to balance checkbooks, pay bills and manage finances at a specific time. The reason for developing these problems and challenges is memory issues. 

Even people with this disease find themselves unable to identify numbers. They cannot deal with the numbers properly.

Making Decisions And Judgements

Alzheimer’s disease causes a decrease in people’s abilities to make judgments and routine life decisions. For example, a person with this disease makes a poor choice to wear clothes.

Planning A Specific Thing Or Performing Daily Life Tasks

The activities of daily life become a struggle for the people with this disease. They face difficulty in planning such as playing their favorite game or cooking their favorite food. 

People forget to perform the tasks that are basic such as bathing and dressing in case of severe complications. This is an advanced stage of Alzheimer’s disease.

Changes Of Behavior And Personality

Brain changes in Alzheimer’s disease affect the behaviors and mood of people. The problems that people with this disease suffer are following.

  • Apathy
  • Social withdrawal
  • Depression
  • Mood swings
  • Distrust on others
  • Aggressiveness
  • Irritability
  • Changes in the habits of sleeping
  • Wandering
  • Loss of inhibitions
  • Delusions

Causes Of Alzheimer’s Disease

Abnormal protein build-up around the human brain cells causes Alzheimer’s disease. One of the proteins that are involved in this disease is amyloid. Deposits of this protein make plaques around the cells of the brain. Another protein involved is tau.

Deposits of this protein cause abnormality by forming tangles with the cells of the human brain. The exact cause of why this process begins is still unknown. Scientists have revealed that this process initiates many years before the appearance of symptoms.

The process of protein build-up affects the brain cells. That’s why the chemical messengers (neurotransmitters) start decreasing. Such neurotransmitters perform the function of sending signals and messages between your brain cells. 

People with Alzheimer’s disease have a low level of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter. Different areas of the brain start shrinking with the passage of time in this disease.

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