Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 13: Series Summary

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Today’s blog is going to be the 13th and final blog in the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series. As this blog is going to be the final blog in this series, at least for now, it is going to act as a summary of the whole series. In this blog, I am going to be going through some of the main points that have been discussed throughout this series and how they relate to both Alzheimer’s Avoidance and Alzheimer’s Awareness.

Throughout this series, we have talked about several different methods techniques that can help reduce your chance of getting Alzheimer’s/ Dementia. These methods have ranged from regular exercise, through to completing puzzle games and even listening to music. The main theme that transcended throughout was that all of the different methods/techniques engaged the brain in Mental Stimulation.

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Mental Stimulation is at the forefront when it comes to reducing the chances of getting Alzheimer’s/Dementia. Ensuring that your mind is actively engaging in a vast array of activities is key when it comes to not only Alzheimer’s/Dementia but also when it comes to Mental Health as a whole.

One common trend that is very fitting to Alzheimer’s is a lack of understanding. It is something that you find more and more when discussing more general Mental Health problems but even more so when you are talking about Alzheimer’s/Dementia. Learning how a condition affects not only the person suffering but also their surrounding family and friends can be essential when it comes to coming to terms with the condition. It is said that you can only really accept a condition if you fully understand what it is and the effect that it can have on your lives. In my opinion, if you fully understand a condition then you will be better equipped to process and manage the condition if it ever affects you or your family.

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Although this series is coming to a close, I will still be creating a lot of content in regards to Alzheimer’s. All of the blogs in this series are available in the Blogapedia page, every other blog I have done on Alzheimer’s is available via selecting the Alzheimer’s category on the Category cloud or by searching Alzheimer’s on the pages search bar. I am also fixing my Alzheimer’s Awareness page, Don’t Forget Me, so if you would like to learn more about Alzheimer’s then more content can be found there. I will be adding more content to the page over the next few weeks so if you are curious, check it out. you can find the page here: http://www.dontforgetme.org.uk.

That’s all I want to talk about in today’s blog! Thank you all for reading! What do you think of this series? Are you sad to see it go? What series would you like to see on the page next? Would you like to see any specific blogs in the future?

Thanks,

James

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Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 12: Understanding Alzheimer’s

With a forever increasing population, and with people living longer, there are more and more people being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and Dementia each day. That fact in itself is scary however it gets worse when we look at how many people actually understand what Alzheimer’s is. This is going to be what we are going to be talking about in today’s blog, what exactly is Alzheimer’s?

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Today’s blog is the 12th blog in the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series and is going to be about understanding Alzheimer’s. It is easy to say that Alzheimer’s is just losing your memories but it is so much more than that. Alzheimer’s and Dementia are two very severe conditions that can potentially lead to death. If we know what Alzheimer’s and Dementia actually are and the differences that lie between the two, then I believe that we will be in a position moving forward.

We’ll first take a look at a video published by Bupa Health UK that looks into the differences between Alzheimer’s and Dementia:

As you can see from the video there is a clear difference between Alzheimer’s and Dementia. It is important to remember this difference when talking about each of the conditions. Despite this difference, there are quite a lot of similarities between the two regarding how they affect you and what happens when they both progress and get worse.

One of the common mistakes that I hear when talking to people about Alzheimer’s is then saying that Alzheimer’s only makes people lose some of their memories. I have learned the hard way that this is simply not the case. Alzheimer’s is a cruel condition which takes a person you love away from you and then leaves them as a shell of what they once were.

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Alzheimer’s is a horrific condition that sadly people don’t understand until someone they know gets diagnosed with it. People do lose their memories, yes, but they also do so much more. They forget how to walk, how to talk and eventually how to even breathe. Alzheimer’s and Dementia both can kill. It is something that is barely ever spoken about but it is a reality when talking about the two. They are very dangerous illnesses that if not handled with care, can become deadly.

This blog isn’t meant to sound negative, it is just meant to be completely honest. From my experience, I would have loved to have known more about Alzheimer’s before my grandmother was diagnosed with it. Learning about the condition whilst watching it take your loved one away is a painful thing to do and I feel like we should try and change it. Understanding can take a while but it is a part of life and is something that we all do eventually.

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One thing that I want to mention, a thing that I wish I understood at the time, is that Alzheimer’s doesn’t wait. Alzheimer’s doesn’t stop and wait for your approval or for you to be ready when it starts affecting someone. You need to make the most of the time you have left because honestly, it will get harder as time goes on and as I have mentioned it doesn’t wait for you.

The fact that it doesn’t wait for you again isn’t meant to scare you, it is the harsh reality of the situation. If you wait a few weeks for Alzheimer’s to ‘blow over’ then I’m sorry to say that you have wasted those weeks out of the time that you had left. You need to make the most of the person while they are still there. Go out to the beach, take that trip, have that photo. Get things done while you can, you will feel glad about it eventually.

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There is a lot more information out there about Alzheimer’s if you do want to learn more. There are blogs and series on this page, you have organisations such as The Alzheimer’s Society and you can ask your GP. If you’re looking for stuff on this page I would recommend either searching ‘Alzheimer’s’ on our page search bar or read the blogs on Alzheimer’s in our Blogapedia! If you have any questions let me know!

That’s all I want to talk about in today’s blog! I think that today’s blog is the penultimate blog in the Alzheimers Avoidance series! There have been a lot of blogs in the series now and I feel like I have covered a lot of what I set out to cover. What do you think of today’s blog? Have you enjoyed the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series? Do you know what Alzheimer’s and Dementia are? Let me know what you think!

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day!

Sweeney’s Blogs

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James

Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 9: Learning a New Language?

Have you ever wanted to learn a new language? Have you ever thought of what knowing more than one language can do to you? Research shows that learning more than one language can help reduce your risk of getting Alzheimer’s! What a motivating factor! We’ll take a deeper look into it in today’s blog!

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Today’s blog is going to be the 9th blog in the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series and is going to be about how learning a new language can help reduce your chance of getting illnesses such as Alzheimer’s/Dementia. As I say for every other blog in this series, the solutions and methods that I share are not guaranteed to work and you know what they say, it doesn’t hurt to try!

Let’s watch a short video first to gain a basic understanding of how knowing more  than one language can affect Alzheimer’s:

I found the video to be really insightful and I would just like to go through a few of the notes that I made whilst it was playing.

The first point that I noted down was that people who spend the majority of their lives can postpone symptoms of Alzheimer’s for around 4-5 years! 4-5 years, isn’t that incredible! Let’s put this into context. Say you were going to get Alzheimer’s and there was no way around it. Wouldn’t it be so much better to get Alzheimer’s at 84/85 years of age compared to 80 years of age? I fully understand in an ideal world you wouldn’t have it all, but 4-5 years difference is enormous!

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The second point that I took down was that bilingual minds tend to be more connected and usually respond better to conditions such as Alzheimer’s compared to a monolingual brain. This is due to the fact that a bilingual brain is more connected and has a more robust set of mental activities and components. Wouldn’t you agree that having an extra layer of defence against a condition as cruel as Alzheimer’s is a great thing? Personally, I think it is great as you do not even have to be fluent at using the language, just having a basic understanding helps!

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One of the last points that I want to pick up on from the video is about a survey that was completed in Luxembourg. The video tells us that a study taken in Luxembourg found that people who knew three languages were even better off in regards to being less likely to have Alzheimer’s compared to bilingual people. It is like I say in a lot of these videos, it is all down to the mental stimulation your brain gets.

Mental Stimulation is one of the biggest variables when it comes to Alzheimer’s, arguably the biggest. The question that I always think is why wouldn’t you do things like puzzle games or in this case learn a language if you knew that it could reduce your chances of getting Alzheimer’s/Dementia? It’s a question that I always ask and the people who respond don’t really know what to say.

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One of the things that I like about this method of reducing your chances of getting Alzheimer’s is that you do not even have to be fluent in the language that you choose to learn. Even if you only know the basics, you will still be a lot better off. The question people always ask is how do I learn a language? The response I give, use the internet!

The internet is the worlds biggest resource of information and is a database of different information. Depending on how you learn: you can watch videos on YouTube, take tests and courses on DuoLingo or even just follow a tutorial on a random website. There are a million different ways to do it, why not try one of them?

Let me do a quick example. Let’s say I wanted to learn how to start speaking Welsh and I liked learning through YouTube videos. the first thing I would do is type in Welsh for beginners into the YouTube search bar. When I press enter a whole barrage of different videos come up on my screen. It is now up to you to pick one to use.

I have chosen one that it is fairly informal and I feel like I can watch it and stay calm. The creator is also learning with us and that just makes the content more relatable in my opinion.

Although the content that Will covers each video is pretty basic, you will start to see a gradual progression in the use of the language. I quite like going back to his videos every now and again as I feel like it is good to refresh the fundamentals of languages you learn. The best thing about using YouTube videos too is that you can pause them and even go back and watch part of it again! That is only a quick exaple into how to start learning a language but I feel like itshows how easy it can be!

That’s all I wanted to talk about in today’s blog! I feel like the two-week break we have had in this series, caused by changes to the Blogapedia last week, have made the world of difference! I have more of an idea about how I want to style the blogs going forward and I think I can do them better than I could before. What do you think of today’s blog? Do you prefer it when I use photos and videos or not? Do you know more than one language? If so which ones do you know? Can you think of any other ways to reduce the risk of getting Alzheimer’s?

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

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James

Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 5: Listening to Music?

Music – one of the biggest art forms in the world is, on average, listened to by people for around 5 hours per day. people who listen to music do so for a whole number of different reasons. Some people listen to music to help them relax, some to help them focus and some to just simply pass the time. People use and listen to music near;y every day but has anyone stopped to think about how listening to music can affect your chances of getting Alzheimer’s?

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Today’s blog is going to be the fifth blog in the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series and is going to be about how listening to music can help reduce your chance of getting Alzheimer’s/ Dementia. Listening to music can help trigger emotional memories and is a real help to people with Alzheimer’s but also to people who do not have the condition.

I could go into detail describing the ways that music helps people with Alzheimer’s but I have found a few videos that do a much better job. the two videos in this blog are both fairly short but add so much more value in comparison to the words that I could use.

This first video always makes me smile. The sheer difference that music makes to Carol’s confidence and memory is astounding and the emotion that you can feel from her and her husband is a great feeling. Watching how a person can go from barely speaking to singing along to a song due to the power of music is a pleasure to watch and goes to show the effect that music can have on a person with Alzheimer’s.

The reaction and recognition that the music brings is really interesting to look at and to think about. Although the video is aimed at people who do have Alzheimer’s it does also apply to people who do not have the condition. triggering old memories can be a really good thing to do and is something that I highly encourage if you are dealing with someone who is or isn’t at risk of getting Alzheimer’s!

The second video that we are going to watch goes into a bit more depth and covers more of the educational side of music and Alzheimer’s.

I found that this video was a very interesting watch and there was one part that I found was worded excellently. This part is when one of the children is speaking near the end. he says that memories make us who we are and without them, we start to lose meaning. he says that it is really nice to have the chance to bring that meaning back to the lives of the old people who they are helping.

I could go into more detail oj the topic but I feel like the videos really do it justice. they show not only the logic behind music and Alzheimer’s but also show the emotional reaction that the music generates. It really is an interesting theory to look into and there are a lot more videos and posts available if it interests you.

The happiness and smiles that you can see in the elderly people when they start listening to music is a pleasure to see and helps us see that there is still something there. There is still a part of the person left and that is something worth holding on to! Watching videos on music and Alzheimer’s helps me see that even though Alzheimer’s is a terrible condition that destroys lives, we can still be happy and enjoy music through it.

That is all I want to talk about in today’s blog! What do you all think? Did you know that there is a connection between Music and Alzheimers? Do you know any other techniques used to reduce the risk of getting Alzheimer’s? What sings would you have ion your playlist?

Thank you all for reading and I hope you enjoyed the blog. See you in the next one!

Sweeney’s Blogs

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James

Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 2: Regular Exercise

It is often said that exercise leads to a healthy mind in a healthy body but have you ever stopped to think about how that relates to Alzheimer’s/ Dementia? Did you know that regular exercise can reduce your chance of getting Alzheimer’s/ Dementia? If you know someone who already has the condition it can slow down their rate of deterioration. You could say that reducing your chances of getting Alzheimer’s is a walk and is going to be what we are talking about today.

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Today’s blog is going to be the second blog in the Alzheimer’s Avoidance series and is going to focus on exercise. Regular exercise can play a vital role when it comes to reducing your chances of getting Alzheimer’s. As well as reducing your chances of getting Alzheimer’s it also allows you to keep fit and active leading to a healthier body.

A post published on the New York Times’s website back in 2014, https://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/07/02/can-exercise-reduce-alzheimers-risk/, discusses whether or not exercise can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s. The article starts out by talking about how exercise helps keep the “brain robust” in people that are at an increased risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease.

The article goes on to say that even “moderate amounts of physical activity” help reduce the risk of getting Alzheimer’s. This point is crucial. The point of this blog is to say to do regular exercise, it doesn’t matter how much you do. Even a small walk a day can make a big difference when it comes to keeping the brain active. That is the main focus of the exercise, it is keeping the brain active and working.

I’m not saying that if you walk miles and miles every day then you are definitely not going to get Alzheimer’s as that just is not the case. What I am saying though is that if you do regular exercise each day, even if that is only a small walk, then it is going to help reduce your chance of getting Alzheimer’s whilst also helping keep fit and maintain good physical health.

Regular exercise does have a lot of benefits for your social life too which help a lot in reducing the chance of Alzheimer’s. Communicating with different people regularly requires you to keep thinking and keeping your brain active which can again reduce your chances. Regular exercise can be quick and easy and can have a lot of rewards for both your physical and mental health.

That is all I want to talk about in today’s blog! As I mentioned last week the blogs in this series may be a bit shorter than my usual blogs but the content is still important! Exercise brings us lots of rewards even if we only do small tasks every day. Whilst being a good tool at reducing your risk of Alzheimer’s, it can also be great for your physical health and your social life!

Can you think of anything that you want to see in this series? Do you know any ways to reduce the chance of getting Alzheimer’s? Do you do regular exercise? Does this blog make you think about doing more exercise? Let me know what you think! Feedback is always appreciated on this page – be it positive or negative!

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

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James

Alzheimer’s Avoidance – Blog 1: An Introduction

Worried you might get Alzheimer’s or Dementia in the future? Do you know someone who has Alzheimer’s/Dementia and are trying to find ways to slow the rate of deterioration? This series all about Alzheimer’s Avoidance will hopefully answer those questions as well as any other questions you have on the topic!

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the first blog in our brand new Alzheimer’s Avoidance series. This series is all about the steps that we can take to reduce our chances of getting Alzheimer’s/ Dementia. If you know somebody that has got Alzheimer’s/ Dementia this series will be helpful to find out some of the things we can do to help reduce the rate of deterioration for these cruel illnesses.

Although we cannot directly stop someone from getting Alzheimer’s, there are a few steps and methods that we can do to help reduce their chances of getting the illness. The methods that I talk about in this series are not going to be guaranteed to work but there is a chance that it can help someone. I will be writing about all of the methods and techniques that I have found through research when I found out that my grandmother had Alzheimer’s. If you know any methods/ techniques yourself and would like them to be in the series please get in touch with me and we can arrange something.

The blogs in this series are more than likely going to be a little bit shorter than my usual blog size but I assure you that the content will still be worthwhile and will be planned and thought about with great detail. At the minute I am planning on writing about one technique/method per blog but that can be subject to change.

In regards to how many blogs are going to be in this series, I have not set an exact number in place yet. At the minute I feel like it is going to come down to a few different factors. First of all is how the series is being received by all of you, our readers. If people are not enjoying the series or want to see something else being covered then I will more than happily move on to a different topic. The second major factor is the content that I am going to be covering in the series. If I do get through all of the content that I want to cover in this series and there are no more ideas for future blogs then I will finish the series and start a new one up to replace it.

I am really looking forward to writing this series as Alzheimer’s is a topic that I feel very strongly about. For new readers to the page, the first series that I wrote on this page was all about Alzheimer’s Acceptance. I cover quite a lot of interesting points in the series so if you are interested please check it out. You can find the links to all of the blogs in the series through our Blogapedia page.

Thank you all for reading and I hope you have a great day! If you have any thoughts or queries about this blog or indeed any other blog I have written please get in touch with me! All feedback is appreciated –  be it positive or negative!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James