We have all heard they saying that perception is reality. Our perception is the ability to see, hear, or become aware of something through our senses. Everyway we as humans are able to preserve or experience the world connects back to our brain. Our brain is the most powerful tool we as humans possess and ours specifically, is what makes us different from all other species. As we as humans age, our bodies and its process can begin to slow down. This is an inevitable truth, however, there are steps that we can take in our earlier years that can certainly slow the progression of these breakdowns.
One of the most difficult breakdowns we in assisted living experience are patients that are experiencing dementia, Alzheimer’s, or significant memory loss. Our brain creates our best and worst days, our greatest courage and deepest fears, our dearest memories and those we hope to forget. It can be difficult to watch our loved ones experience significant memory loss in their later year. However, there are many myths that surround memory loss and our goal is to dispel the top three in hopes that family and loved ones can seek comfort in being more informed. Let’s take a look:
Myth #1: Memory Loss Is A Definite Sign Our Impeding Alzheimer’s Disease
Recent research conducted has shown that Alzheimer’s Disease is one health condition that people fear the most in their later years. The one other health condition to follow is cancer. We all remember our dear old dad beating himself up that he forgot where he last left the remote, car keys, a wrench, etc. This is perfectly normal. In our busy day to day lives, it is normal to forget where you left items here and there. Basic memory slips are completely normal and are not a grim indicator of something larger at play. Being distracted, tired, or busy is something we all experience.
Myth #2: Memory Loss Happens with Age and There Is Nothing That Can Be Done to Change It
Science continues to teach us incredible things about the brain and memory. With each passing year, our medical professionals learn more and more about improve our brain and overall health. Diet and exercise, social habits and rest play key roles in maintaining and bettering the memory. Rest also includes sleep. Proper and effective sleep patterns have been proven to effectively hedge against the development of brain ailments and memory loss.
Myth #3: Memory Loss/Dementia Is an Inherited Condition
The overwhelming majority of cases, this is untrue. There are some rare causes of dementia that are very clearly “inherited”, for example Huntington’s disease but generally speaking, the most common risk factor is age.
Huntington’s Disease (HD) is a fatal genetic disorder that causes the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. It deteriorates a person’s physical and mental abilities usually during their prime working years and has no cure. – HDSA.org
To wrap things up, this is by no means an exhaustive list of the common myths and misconceptions surrounding memory loss. However, more often then not loved ones will be able to recognize the signs of significant distress that are more than just simple forgetfulness. However, if you have any question or concerns regarding a parent of loved one, please do not hesitate to call us directly for assistance!