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Contributing Factors to Alzheimer’s Disease

By Mark Silvanic, 9:00 am on

Healthcare providers and researchers categorize Alzheimer’s as a progressive disease that gradually deteriorates all aspects of an individual’s mental and physical health due to the deterioration of brain cells. The factors contributing to the development of the disease are complex and varied, but Colorado Springs Home Care Assistance hopes the following information will provide insight for family members and their senior loved ones.

Genetics

Researchers have identified genes that put individuals at a greater risk for developing Alzheimer’s. The APOE-e4 gene is related to the beta-amyloid protein development that contributes to plaque formation and subsequently interferes with neuron communication and degrades brain cells. 

Cardiovascular Disease

Diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and other cardiovascular diseases may increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Researchers found that 80 percent of people with Alzheimer’s also have evidence of cardiovascular disease. 

Traumatic Brain Injury

Brain injuries caused by the blunt force trauma of falls, motor vehicle accidents or other events can lead to Alzheimer’s and dementia development. These injuries permanently damage irreplaceable brain cells, disrupt vascular circulation and interfere with normal brain cell communication. 

Diet

Several studies, including one conducted by the Mayo Clinic, show a diet high in carbohydrates can increase dementia risk by as much as 88 percent. Another study published in JAMA Neurology found that diets high in saturated fat and sugar also make it more challenging for the brain to clear amyloid beta proteins from the brain.

Intellectual Activity

Staying mentally active strengthens and safeguards the communication connections between neurons in the brain. Conversely, a lack of mental stimulation may leave brain cells vulnerable to cognitive decline, the effects of adverse conditions and the biological factors that contribute to Alzheimer’s. 

Substance Abuse

Long-term use of alcohol or recreational drugs is believed to cause neuron cell damage. Brain cell function is also disrupted by permanent alteration in the production, release, and reabsorption of vital neurotransmitters. The neurons are then vulnerable to dementia and Alzheimer’s. 

It can be challenging caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, but you don’t have to do it alone. If your senior family member was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, contact Home Care Assistance at (719) 822-1229 and ask about our Alzheimer’s home care for seniors in Colorado Springs. Whether your family member is in the beginning or later stages, we can accommodate his or her care needs. Our trained caregivers can offer your loved one comfort and support in addition to help with household chores, meal preparation, medication reminders, safety monitoring, and daily exercise. Help is just a phone call away.

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