We all enjoy talking about the “good old days!” Memories are a part of everyone’s life, and they all reflect on the good and terrible events they’ve had. Unfortunately, as the global incidence of Alzheimer’s disease rises, more people are losing their memories—and even their ability to remember fundamental acts that do not necessitate conscious thought.
What is Alzheimer’s Disease And How does it Affect People?
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is one of the most common types of dementia, affecting around 3.7 million Indians in the last decade. Early diagnosis and prompt action are hampered by a lack of awareness of the disease’s early signs and knowledge of the accompanying hazards. Furthermore, the disease process cannot be prevented or reversed.
When some undesirable proteins build in the brain, AD develops in people around the age of 40-50. These protein deposits obstruct the passage of information by interfering with brain connections—think of them as impassable barricades.
As a result, over time and depending on the level of protein accumulation, a patient begins to forget things and gradually loses the ability to make the connection between sensory information and the required action.
For example, a patient in late stages of dementia could not know what to do with a toothbrush or how to tighten a door lock, despite the fact that these are tasks he or she has been doing for years. It’s heartbreaking to see a loved one degrade in this way. Caregivers are often burdened by such incidents since they affect the patient’s overall quality of life.
What is The Best Way to Deal With This?
There are currently no drugs available to treat the illness. As a result, the very least we can do is try to slow down the disease’s growth. “First and foremost, everyone over the age of 45 should get an annual health checkup, with brain imaging if necessary.
“By doing so, we may be able to detect Alzheimer’s disease early and begin activities and treatments that can delay its course,” says Dr. Pradeep Mahajan, a regenerative medicine researcher.
“Our bodies include stem cells and growth factors, which regulate inflammation, increase the capabilities of other cells, and offer a steady supply of healthy cells to replace destroyed tissues. “We only provide these chemicals at the required area in the appropriate quantity through cell-based therapy,” Dr Mahajan adds.
“There are various other molecules that operate as messenger molecules, such as chaperones (helper proteins) and exosomes (cell-associated packets of genetic material, proteins, immune cells, etc.) that also help in detangling nerve fibres and protein deposits in the brain,” he explains. These can be used to restore internal balance and establish a better environment in the brain (homeostasis).
“With more focused medicines under investigation, it may be possible to reverse Alzheimer’s disease in the future.” For the time being, however, regenerative medicine can provide a ray of hope for patients, allowing them to live as independently as possible in a natural, less invasive manner,” Dr Mahajan adds.