It’s no secret how chronic memory issues and cognitive decline can seriously affect your day-to-day life. Unfortunately, this may be one of the early signs of Alzheimer’s disease or a similar issue connected with the brain. But what exactly is Alzheimer’s disease? Is it possible to cure dementia and improve brain health? Is it related to health and exercise? Let’s look at answering these questions and other important factors in more detail.
While dementia and Alzheimer’s disease normally occur in older adults, anyone around the age of 35 can start to suffer from cognitive impairment and the risk factors need to be assessed. Even mild cognitive impairment can affect your daily life. Today, we’re going to look at those who are at risk of dementia and the possible onset of Alzheimer’s disease and highlight some of the telltale signs associated with this debilitating condition. From there, we’ll give you pointers on how to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and improve brain health. And yes, it’s possible to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and slow down its progression.
7 Common Signs of Alzheimer’s
We’ll quickly point out that any conclusive diagnosis needs to be done by a qualified professional. Nonetheless, the following signs may indicate its onset and will warrant a visit to the doctor.
Memory loss is, no doubt, one of the most common signs of Alzheimer’s disease as mentioned earlier. Of course, it could simply be age-related memory loss and nothing really to worry about. However, you may find yourself becoming increasingly forgetful; even of information that you’ve recently learned. Not only that, but you may start forgetting important milestones and dates such as birthdays and anniversaries.
During this phase, you’ll have to rely on family members for reminders regarding certain information.
Facing Challenges When Solving Problems and Completing Tasks
Closely linked to memory loss, is the sudden inability to plan or solve problems—particularly of issues you’ve once handled yourself in the past. These situations can include any of the following:
- Failure to follow a set plan regarding how you conduct your day’s activities. Everything will now be conducted in a disorderly or haphazard manner.
- You suddenly find yourself facing challenges when working with numbers.
- Forgetting a family recipe that you’ve previously mastered over the years.
- In severe cases, you can even forget to keep track of your monthly obligations like payment of bills.
- General difficulty in concentrating.
Confusion Associated with a Time or Place
Anyone who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease might start to become confused. Here, you find yourself:
- Losing track of seasons; you don’t know whether it’s summer or winter.
- Getting lost when driving to a familiar location.
- Experiencing difficulties when managing your budget.
- Needing help, even with the simplest of tasks like operating the microwave or switching on the air conditioner.
- Forgetting where exactly you are at any given time. This, unfortunately, puts you at a greater risk of getting lost.
Trouble with Comprehending Visual Images
Are you suddenly forgetting familiar faces such as a close friend or even a family member? If so, you may be displaying possible early signs of Alzheimer’s disease.
Your visual impairment won’t only be restricted to identifying individuals. You may experience difficulty in the following scenarios:
- Determining different colors
- Experience problems when driving
Problems with Speaking or Writing
Anyone suffering from Alzheimer’s disease often has problems holding a conversation. You either stop in the middle of a conversation or find yourself repeating information. Mostly, the abrupt stop during a conversation is because you simply have no idea how to continue.
Your inability to follow through a conversation may also be because of a difficulty finding the right word to use. In this case, you’ll end up calling things by the wrong names.
Increased Misplacement of Things
It’s not uncommon to forget where you placed something like your car keys every now and again. However, if it becomes a frequent occurrence, then it’s a cause for concern, especially if you can’t retrace your steps.
Aside from constantly misplacing items, a person with Alzheimer’s disease is more likely to put things in the strangest of places. Therefore, be wary of that red flag.
Again, we’ll point out that it’s okay to experience episodes of indecisiveness from time to time. The increased frequency of such scenarios is when it becomes something to worry about.
Are you constantly making bad decisions regarding your finances? Do you find yourself overspending on items that are absolutely unnecessary? Such incidences aren’t always a regular case of bad decision making—they may very well be signs of Alzheimer’s disease.
4 Ways to Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease
After looking at the causes, the question should focus on whether or not there is a way to prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists have found that incorporating healthy habits in your daily routine and lifestyle can greatly minimize the onset of this condition, as we’ll discuss below.
Physical activity is another way that helps reduce the risk of the disease by up to 50% or can slow down the progression.
You don’t have to go overboard with the exercise. In fact, dedicating just 30 minutes a day of moderate aerobic exercises at least three times a week is good enough.
It’s time to ditch the junk food. Why not try eating a healthier and more balanced diet or even a plant-based diet and other foods, as well as a reduction in fats? Recent studies have shown that eating a Mediterranean diet to be exact can greatly prevent the onset of the disease or slow down the symptoms. Not only that, cutting out things like trans fats will help reduce the risk of other diseases such as high blood pressure and heart disease Include more fruits and vegetables, not forgetting whole grains & olive oil.
Foods you must avoid or at least eat in moderation include:
- Red wine
- Red meat
Get Enough Sleep
If you’re a workaholic and spend most of your nights at the office, it’s time for a change. According to our research, getting enough sleep is known to prevent Alzheimer’s disease. An average of seven to eight hours of sleep each night is enough to help reduce the risk of getting this debilitating condition.
Be More Outgoing
Forget being an introvert, it’s time to get out more. The list of healthy activities proven effective in how to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s is endless; from learning new hobbies to playing a sport. You can also go for drinks with friends more frequently, go shopping, play chess…anything to connect more socially. You’ll surely reap the rewards.
Now that you’ve got the necessary information, are you willing to take the first step toward a healthier lifestyle with more exercise and good diet and maximize your cognitive function and reduce the risk of onset of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease? You decide.