10 warning signs for Alzheimer’sby Roberta Lunghini - 2016.08.02
There is no way to actually predict whether or not one will get Alzheimer’s, but there are warning signs that should not be ignored. The following 10 signs were published by Villaggio Amico, a multifunctional residence for the elderly near Milan, Italy, to help family members and caregivers of the residents identify these signs. The first seven represent what are referred to as cognitive symptoms:
One of the most common symptoms of Alzheimer’s – not to be confused with the normal “forgetting things” that can occurs with normal aging. Or the occasional forgetting of names of familiar people for a minute or two.
2. Being unable to complete simple daily tasks
Daily routines suddenly become difficult and require more effort – like getting dressed or preparing a familiar meal.
3. Language-based difficulties
The names of very familiar objects are difficult to remember and it seems as if the words to express an idea or concept are on the tip of the tongue – but never quite formulate properly.
4. Difficulty reasoning and planning
Very basic, elementary calculations are difficult and linear reasoning does not come easily. Handling money without making mistakes becomes a real chore.
5. Temporal disorientation
Dates, days of the week and even the seasons seem to be confusing.
6. Spatial disorientation
Familiar routes in the neighborhood become complicated and even finding one’s way back home can cause confusion.
7. Difficulty understanding visual images and spatial relationships
Problems with one’s eyesight can be a warning sign of Alzheimer’s disease – especially when there is apparent difficulty reading, judging distance or distinguishing colors and contrasts.
The following warning signs are considered to be non-cognitive:
8. Irritability and delirium
Frequent episodes of being irascible or acting out with people closest to them. Incongruous behaviors that can be delusionary or often persecutory.
9. Anxiety and depression
Frequent episodes of anxiety and feeling blue.
10. Apathy or Abulia (loss of interest in favorite people/activities)
Loss of interest in people who are closest and in activities that were once a source of great pleasure. Social functions and family relationships are avoided or eliminated altogether.
Revolutionary anti-Parkinson’s watch will be on the market soon
Emma Watch is an avant-garde Microsoft project presented at the Build Conference 2017 in Seattle (Washington). It is a Smartwarch created by researcher Haiyan Zhang who tested it at the Microsoft center in Cambridge (UK), able to reduce hand tremors, characteristic to Parkinson’s. This is possible, thanks to the watch’s vibrations Read More.
Why elderly can ‘give up on life’ in care homes
Going into a care home can make elderly residents give up on life. A lack of mental stimulation often causes apathy which can lead to premature death. The charity Age UK says some care homes do not provide engaging activities, leaving frail pensioners ‘withdrawn and unmotivated’. The warnings follow a Read More.
Videogames among risk factors for Alzheimer’s
Playing violent "shooter" video games can damage the brain and might even increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease, researchers claim. A study by the University of Montréal has shown habitual players of action games have fewer neurons in their hippocampus, a key memory centre in the brain. The discovery challenges previous Read More.
A belt that helps people with Parkinson’s not to fall
A belt that helps people with Parkinson’s in balancing their movements. This is the latest innovation by researchers at the University of Houston. They have created a wearable belt lined with vibrating actuators that creates a personalized, in-home rehabilitation program with “touch guidance” based on a patient’s individual range of Read More.
Free pizza for all elderly citizens living alone
Pizza for everyone. In Bagno a Ripoli, near Florence, the local administration and the Red Cross created a project that provides free pizza door-to-door for the elderly. The target are old people who social services are already following. The idea to assist this population (primarly those who are alone) in Read More.
If anaesthesia is among the causes of Alzheimer’s
Over65 hit by postoperative delirium risk Alzheimer’s three times more than other old patients. It has been affirmed by an American study published in the British Journal of Anaesthesia. Authors have involved a sample of elderly people over 65 without any diagnosis of cognitive problems before surgery. After analysis, they Read More.