Unit 33 Essay

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The term 'dementia' is used to describe a set of symptoms that occur when the brain is damaged by specific diseases. Alzheimer’s was first described by a German neurologist, Alois Alzheimer’s. It is a physical disease affecting the brain. Protein develops in the structure of the brain, causing the death of cells, which then causes a shortage of chemicals that are involved with the transmission of messages with in the brain. Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, it is a progressive disease where the symptoms worsen gradually as the brain damages. Although Alzheimer’s is the most common form, no two people are the same and they display different symptoms. The symptoms can include:- * Lapses in memory. In the early stages, people may experience difficulty in finding the right words to use. * Confusion. Forgetting people’s names, places, appointments and recent events. * Mood swings. * Communication problems. * Being withdrawn * Loss of confidence * Difficulties with every day activities. People suffering with Alzheimer’s will need more help with daily living as the illness progresses. There is no known single factor that causes Alzheimer’, but some research has shown that age, genetics, environment, lifestyle and general heath all play a part. It is thought that people who smoke, have high cholesterol, hypertension and diabetes have a higher chance of getting Alzheimer’s in their later life. Also it is though that people who have Down syndrome in their 50’s ad 60’s stand a higher chance. Anyone who has suffered head injuries i.e. boxers, also have a greater chance of having Alzheimer’s. To get a clear diagnosis, people have to see their GP, who will carry out blood tests, a full physical examination and a memory assessment. They may then refer them onto a neurologist or psychiatrist who may asses their memory and thinking

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