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Not All Alzheimers Symptoms Are Caused By Alzheimers

Aug 17, 2007
One, however, should not conclude that all memory loss is caused by Alzheimer's disease. There are two basic causes of memory loss, namely normal or age related memory loss and the abnormal type. It is normal that middle age and older people begin to forget a number of things. Their ability to remember is often times measured on a standardized scale.

Alzheimers and dementia are strongly linked because Alzheimers disease is the most common type of dementia. Dementia is the constant evolution of the atrophy of the brain's cognitive functions. In the case of Alzheimers, abnormal protein build up happen in the brain which interferes with its normal functions through interactions with the brain nerves and neurotransmitters that cause these elements to whither and die.

One of the most dreaded diseases in old age is Alzheimers disease. Although unlike cancer and heart problem, this is actually not fatal. In fact, people with Alzheimers can live for a long time with proper care. That is actually the problem most of the time.

Diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease can be done through a series of tests. The patient exhibiting some signs of the disease must undergo a variety of laboratory tests, such as physical and mental assessments. As of late, there is no known single test available that will effectively diagnose Alzheimer's in patients.

Should the patient manage to get out, the second fail- safe will be to attach a bracelet or a card. This will make it easy for someone to return the person home or be informed where the sufferer can be picked up.

The most common symptoms of Alzheimer's are loss of memory, the decline of intellectual functions and sudden changes in personality. At the first stages of the disease, symptoms exhibited are patients becoming easily tired, upset and anxious.

Alzheimer's disease is considered the 7th leading cause of death in the United States in 2004. The death toll continues to rise every year. The disease is the third most costly in the U.S. Heart disease and cancer are the first and second most costly respectively. It is recorded that there 24 million people with dementia worldwide, the figure will more than double by 2040.

Aside from the early symptom of memory loss, Alzheimer's disease at the early stage could also change the patient's behavior. And as the disease develops, the patient will loose more and more control over body functions such as affecting the way the person thinks and respond. With the effects on the brain's cognitive functions, the patient will have trouble talking, will find skilled movements troublesome to do and hard to accomplish, and will start slowing down in terms of movements.

When it is on its later stages, language problems may also happen because of the inability of the person to recall words that are appropriate for what they are going to say. The disease may also result to behavioral changes because of progressive memory loss. There are some patients who don't remember how to go about their normal functions such as eating, sleeping or brushing their teeth. Some may even forget how to breathe.
About the Author
Garland Choate (GR) is a retired Airline Captain who now publishes articles from the USVI. Find many great articles on Alzheimers at http://www.chocolate.WAHWarriors.com
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