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June 8, 2022

June is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month

The month of June jumpstarts many awareness months, including Pride Month, National Headache and Migraine month, and today’s topic: Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. Each year, the Alzheimer’s Association, a health organization focused on Alzheimer’s care, support and research, raises awareness for Alzheimer’s and other dementias. You may see purple ribbons and t-shirts, hashtags and shared stories throughout the month, all meant to advocate for the more than 6 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s today.

Hear from Dr. Mithila Fadia, board-certified neurologist, on the basics of Alzheimer’s disease.

What is Alzheimer’s Disease?

Alzheimer’s is a type of progressive dementia that affects memory, language, and other cognitive abilities, and usually affects adults age 65 and up. Although often assumed, it is not a normal part of aging. Changes occur in the brain which can cause symptoms such as:

  • Memory loss
  • Disorientation
  • Mood and behavior changes
  • Deepening confusion about events, time and place
  • Unfounded suspicions about family, friends and professional caregivers
  • Difficulty speaking, swallowing and walking.

It can be easy for someone to not notice these changes in themselves, which makes it essential to have a support network who can observe changes for early intervention. If you or a loved one is experiencing any dementia symptoms, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment can help improve quality of life sooner.

How does Alzheimer’s affect the brain?

The brain of a patient with Alzheimer’s reveals atrophy (shrinkage) in the temporal lobes and cortex due to loss of synapses and neurons. There is presence of abnormal deposits called senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles, which are made up of certain polypeptides and abnormal protein respectively.

Living with Alzheimer’s: Care and Treatment

Care of a patient with Alzheimer’s requires multiple approaches.

There are FDA approved medications for Alzheimer’s. These medications unfortunately cannot stop the progression or reverse the disease, but do help to slow down the progression. A new drug was approved for patients that exhibit mild symptoms.

For behavioral symptoms, environment modification to minimize triggers is recommended. Caregivers can be trained to help modify behaviors. If necessary, certain medications can be used, keeping in mind that these can have side effects.

It is important for patients to have a daily routine where they are aware of what to expect next. New situations can tip off their balance. In advanced cases, patients need constant supervision to ensure safety. It is also important to treat any other health conditions the patient may have to minimize complications. Family members and caregivers can reach out to support groups that can provide information regarding locally available resources, helpful in the care of their loved ones.


Avance Neurology specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of a wide range of conditions affecting the brain, spinal cord, peripheral nerves, neuromuscular junction, and muscles. Our committed neurologists and care team partner with you to provide unique, individualized treatment plans to improve quality of life. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Fadia, who uses a holistic approach to neurological care.

Set Up an Appointment with Dr. Mithila Fadia

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