Being a little forgetful, such as not remembering where you parked your car after leaving the mall, is common and harmless, especially when you have a hectic lifestyle or too many things on your mind.
When you start to forget dates or important events or is requested the same information repeatedly however, it is possible that we are facing a case of Alzheimer’s.
Today, it is estimated that in the United States alone, more than 5.4 million of people have Alzheimer’s. By the year 2050, this number could exceed 16 million.
Because 70% of those with Alzheimer’s live at home, the impact of this disease is felt by millions of family members, friends, and caregivers.
Here we show you 4 factors that could be behind the origin of this disease:
1- Anti-anxiety drugs
A class of drugs called benzodiazepinesincluding the popular lorazepam (Ativan), alprazolam (Xanax), and clonazepam (Klonopin), are frequently used to treat anxiety and the insomnia.
Although studies evaluating the safety and efficacy of these drugs have only evaluated their short-term use (usually 3 months or so), many people take them long term.
A study published in the British Medical Journal followed 1,796 Canadians with Alzheimer’s and 7,184 healthy people for 6 years and found that taking benzodiazepines for more than 3 months was associated with a increased risk of Alzheimer’s up to 51%.
There is no risk of taking benzodiazepines occasionally, but if anxiety and insomnia are a constant problem, consider trying the cognitive behavioral therapywhich has been shown to effectively treat both conditions without the potentially harmful side effects of medications.
2- Hitting your head
Many of us are familiar with the problems that can accompany a head injury. Most people recover without problems, but for others, the inflammation that helps heal damaged brain tissue becomes chronicle.
“This is where the possible links to Alzheimer’s can be found,” says Brian Giunta, a psychiatrist and neuroscientist at the University of South Florida.
Some brain cells known as microglia cells either Hortega cellsThey play an important role in inflammation.
“When a microglia is constantly in a pro-inflammatory state, it has a hard time clearing beta amyloid from the brain,” Dr. Giunta explained.
If these proteins are not removed, they can accumulate and kill neurons.
It is still not clear why the inflammatory process remains active in some people or how many Alzheimer’s cases are closely related to traumatic brain injury, Dr. Giunta concluded.
3- Sleep deprivation
In addition to making you feel fatigued during the day, the Lack of sleep it can also speed up the development of Alzheimer’s disease, according to a study published in Neurobiology of Aging.
“Although many sleep problems are very common in people with Alzheimer’s, it was not clear if this was cause or effect,” said Domenico Praticò, a pharmacologist and immunologist at Temple University in Philadelphia.
In a trial on mice, Dr. Praticò and his colleagues found that limiting rodents’ sleep to 4 hours a day impaired learning ability and memoryas well as the ability of neurons to communicate with each other.
Chronic sleep deprivation accelerates harmful processes leading to Alzheimer’s disease.
4- Feeling alone
A study in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry identified some links between loneliness and the development of dementia.
The researchers found that the feelings of loneliness in older adults increased by a 1.63 times the chances of developing dementia during the 3 years of the study.
Scientists still don’t know what is driving this association, but the implications are clear. socializing with other people is healthy for your body.
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