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Alzheimer’s Disease - Brain Disorder

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AlzheimerЎ¦s disease is a progressive brain disorder that gradually causes memory loss, language impairment, movement coordination, recognition, decision-making, and functions that closely relate to the frontal lobe of the brain. At the end, people are not able to take care of themselves and often end up dying. AlzheimerЎ¦s disease progresses at different rates. Currently, there is no known cure for AlzheimerЎ¦s disease. There is also no known single cause. However, in the past years, research has shown success in a more advanced insight of the disease. Scientists believe that even before the symptoms occur, brain cells already begin to damage. When the symptoms do start to emerge, the cells that process, store, and retrieve the Ў§dataЎЁ are already degenerating and dying. The main factors that increase the likelihood of getting AlzheimerЎ¦s disease are age and family history. AlzheimerЎ¦s disease usually occurs in people over the age of 65. The likelihood of developing the disease doubles ever five years of age after 65. Family history has a great influence on increasing the likelihood of getting the disease. Research has shown that those who have parents or siblings with AlzheimerЎ¦s are two to three times more likely to develop the disease than those who do not. Scientists have identified certain genes that increase the risk, but do not guarantee someone will definitely develop the disease. Good examples are studies done with identical twins. They have the same age and same genes. Although when one sibling gets the disease, the other one has an increased risk, but may not necessarily get the disease. Even if both of them get the disease, they may not get it at the same age, which means that there must be other factors that play major roles. Some of the strongest evidence links brain health to heart health. People with diabetes, high cholesterol, stroke, and high blood pressure often increase the risk. For healthy aging, research suggests that keeping a healthy diet, a normal lifestyle, avoiding excess alcohol and tobacco, and exercise can greatly reduce the risk of developing AlzheimerЎ¦s.

Since there is no cure for AlzheimerЎ¦s, doctors can only give prescription medication to improve or stabilize symptoms. Researchers are currently looking for new methods to alter the course of the disease and other ways to improve the life of people with AlzheimerЎ¦s. Most drugs today are designed to prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine, which is a chemical messenger in the brain that is importing for memory and thinking skills promotes thinking. Although cells start dying, the level of the chemical messenger is still high enough to improve cognitive symptoms. New drugs regulate the activity of glutamate, which controls the calcium concentration that flows into a cell. Excess amounts of glutamate allow too much calcium to enter the cell and lead to cell death.

In Asia, when diseases can not be cured with western medicine, people often go to herbal or traditional Chinese medicine remedies. Although many of these remedies are valid candidates for treatment, there are some concerns about using these as an alternative or in addition to FDA approved drugs. Since effectiveness and safety are unknown(they do not need to be approved by FDA), we can not be sure that it will work. Since manufacturers are also not required to report to the FDA and problems with using the products, there will be a cause of concern because there are no issued warnings on using the supplements.

In the book Ў§Jingyue QuanshuЎЁ(Collected works of Zhang Jingyue; 1637 A.D.), a chapter on dementia sees the problem as a combination of the collapse of Ў§original qi(Energy)ЎЁ (yuan qi) and the presence of impure Ў§QiЎЁ(energy) obstructing a clean passageway to the heart. According to Chinese medicine, the kidney is related to a personЎ¦s growth, development, aging, and death. A weak kidney may result in insufficient Ў§QiЎЁ, therefore resulting in rapid Ў§aging.ЎЁ The brain is an outgrowth of the kidney and is nourished by it. Therefore, a healthy kidney will promote a healthy brain. Cognitive functions of the brain are said to be regulated by the heart. The kidney provides the substance, and the heart regulates the activity. It is believed that memory, cognition, and wisdom can not function correctly if the heart is agitated or the channels connecting the heart and brain are obstructed or blocked. To solve

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