Is The Dementia Caused By Parkinsons Or Something Else
Indications that dementia may be caused by something other than Parkinsons disease include agitation, delusions , and language difficulties. If the onset of cognitive symptoms is sudden, theyre more likely due to something other than Parkinsons diseaseeven reversible causes such as infection, a vitamin B12 deficiency, or an underactive thyroid gland.
Depression can mimic dementia by causing similar symptoms such as apathy, memory problems, and concentration difficulties. Since depression is very common in Parkinsons patients, its important to recognize the signs and symptoms of depression in older adults.
Parkinsons disease dementia vs. other dementias
Other types of dementia that can be commonly mistaken for Parkinsons disease dementia include:
Lewy Body Dementia is characterized by fluctuations in alertness and attention, recurrent visual hallucinations, and Parkinsonian motor symptoms like rigidity and the loss of spontaneous movement. In this disorder, cognitive problems such as hallucinations tend to occur much earlier in the course of the disease and often precede difficulties with walking and motor control.
Alzheimers disease and Parkinsons disease are both common in the elderly, especially in those over 85. Patients with Parkinsons who develop dementia may even develop Alzheimers dementia as well. Therefore, its important to be aware of the signs of Alzheimers Disease and how its treated.
Measures Of Global Cognitive Abilities
In this interview protocol , 17 items, including altogether 23 questions, screening for early dementia are presented. The items assess orientation to personal information and time, long-term memory, short-term memory, and abstraction. The questions and tasks are rated either on a 00.5 point scale or on a 01 point scale , depending on the item. The dependent variable was the sum score , and lower scores indicated more difficulty. The cut-off score for dementia was 16 as suggested by Gatz et al. , who reported good sensitivity and specificity for this cut-off. TELE has also been shown to exhibit good sensitivity and specificity for detecting cognitive impairment among aging Finnish subjects and to correlate with clinician-made assessments .
Temporal Preparation In Parkinsons Disease
The foreperiod effect is a behavioral measure of temporal preparation that could be affected in PD. Figure shows the relationship between saccadic latency and foreperiod duration in the 4 groups of subjects . Figure shows that, in control subjects, there was a significant influence of FP duration on the latency of visually guided saccades . As expected, saccadic latencies decreased with increasing FP duration . Although latencies tended to decrease on average between visit 1 and visit 2, this effect did not reach statistical significance . Moreover, there was no significant interaction between FP duration and visit . In Parkin patients , FP duration also had a significant effect on movement latency but dopaminergic treatment had no effect . No interaction between FP duration and treatment was found . In iPD patients, we tested the two different transitions between states in two different groups of subjects . In the ON1-OFF2 group , FP duration and treatment had a significant effect on latencies but no significant interaction between FP duration and treatment was found . Saccadic latencies were longer during visit 1 ON L-Dopa but the FP effect remained unaltered. In the OFF1-ON2 group of iPD patients , FP duration had a significant effect on latencies but not dopaminergic treatment . Here also, no significant interaction between FP duration and treatment was found .
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What Other Things Help
There are various ways to help a person with PDD. Speech therapy may help improve communication between people with PDD and others. Physical therapy may help strengthen and stretch stiff muscles and help to prevent falls.
Research has shown that physical exercise helps to enhance brain health and improves mood and general fitness. A balanced diet, enough sleep and limited alcohol intake are other important ways to promote good brain health. Other illnesses that affect the brain, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, should also be treated if present.
Causes And Risk Factors
PD is idiopathic, meaning that a doctor does not know why a person has the condition. However, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine, early-onset Parkinsons disease has links to genetic inheritance from a parent.
Researchers have identified several risk factors that may make a person with Parkinsons disease more likely to experience dementia.
These risk factors include:
- advanced age at time of diagnosis
- experiencing excessive daytime sleepiness
- hallucinations before the onset of other dementia symptoms
- having a specific Parkinsons symptom that causes a person to have difficulty starting to take a step or to halt mid-step while walking
- a history of mild thought impairment
- more severe movement impairment symptoms than most people with Parkinsons disease
However, researchers do not know why some people with Parkinsons disease develop cognitive difficulties as well as movement problems.
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Wm As A Function Of Global Cognition And Disease Severity Within The Patient Group
Employing simple regression analyses, we examined whether global cognition and disease severity had some predictive value on the three subdomains of WM functioning . Global cognition consisted of a standardized composite score of TELE-M and TICS, whereas disease severity consisted of a standardized composite score of UPDRS I and II, PDQ-39, and SPDDS. The three WM subdomains included the WM tasks with the best fit indices as identified in the CFAs , being standardized and averaged within their respective subdomain. Global cognitive abilities predicted performance in selective updating = 7.07, p = 0.011), continuous monitoring = 8.09, p = 0.006), and maintenance = 4.99, p = 0.030) domains, indicating that those with a better global cognitive status performed better in all subdomains of WM, as compared to those with a poorer global cognitive status . Disease severity did not predict performance either in the continuous monitoring = 0.29, p = 0.59), maintenance of information = 1.47, p = 0.23) or in selective updating = 2.65, p = 0.11) domains.
Figure 4. Regression plots depicting the relationship between global cognition and the three WM subdomains Updating , Continuous monitoring , and Maintenance . Gray shaded regions represent 95% confidence intervals on the slope. Note. All variables are z-standardized.
Memory Loss Cause # 7 Thyroid Problems
According to current professional research studies, hypothyroidism is present in concerning 5% of individuals over the age of 65, and females are practically 3 times as most likely to have thyroid issues. Hyperthyroidism is just as unsafe, both to rest and also total wellness, and research study shows that 15% of individuals identified with an over active thyroid more than the age of 65.
Little is recognized regarding exactly how specifically thyroid disorders affect memory, but research reveals a clear link in between memory loss and also hypo as well as hyperthyroidism. Speak to your doctor to find out even more about your thyroid health and wellness and also if there is anything you can do to assist boost your memory.
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Symptoms Of Parkinsons Disease Dementia
Signs and symptoms of Parkinsons disease dementia include:
- Mental inflexibility
- Short-term memory issues and memory loss
- Trouble with decision making
- Executive function difficulty
- Slow processing speed
- Visual processing difficulty
Non-motor symptoms that can be associated with PDD include:
- Psychosis :
Exercises For Cognitive Impairment
Even a moderate amount of physical exercise can benefit us all, including those with neurological diseases like PD. Harvard Health Publishing notes that, Exercise boosts your memory and thinking skills both directly and indirectly. It acts directly on the body by stimulating physiological changes, along with encouraging production of growth factors chemicals that affect the growth of new blood vessels in the brain, and even the abundance, survival, and overall health of new brain cells. One way Bev practices movement therapy is by dancing, which I wrote about in June.
Nutrition can also play an important role in promoting better brain function. A study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that adhering to a Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fish, and other items, is associated with improved cognitive function.
In terms of brain exercises for people with PD, one option is doing games and puzzles such as word searches. Bev has a booklet of word searches that she keeps on her end table next to the couch. At times, instead of turning on the television, she will turn to the puzzles to work her brain. Just dont ask either of us to play sudoku!
Another brain workout that helps my sister is adding or subtracting manually without a calculator. She sometimes asks me to double-check her totals, but I jokingly tell her, I did not get the math gene, so I am using a calculator.
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Tip : Make It A Priority To Be Socially Engaged
The more socially active you are, the more you connect face-to-face with others, the stronger your memory and cognition is likely to be. You dont need to be a social butterfly or the life of the party, but you do need to regularly connect with people who care about you.
Connecting with others is the most effective means of relieving stress which left unchecked can exacerbate symptoms of Parkinsons disease. Staying socially engaged also stimulates immune function that may slow the progress of disease. While many of us become more isolated as we get older, its never too late to meet others and develop new friendships.
Tips for meeting new people
Hotlines and support
UK: Call the helpline at 0808 800 0303 or visit Parkinsons UK to find support
Australia: Call the info line at 1800 644 189 or visit Parkinsons Australia for links to state organizations that provide support and services.
Canada: Call 1 800 565-3000 for information or referrals or visit Parkinson Society of Canada for regional resources and support.
Advance Planning Benefits Family And Finances
The sad story about Michael J. Fox underscores the need to plan for the financial costs and burdens of aging. Our health, body, and mind will change over time. Often we get little advance warning.
Experts suggest planning in your 40s and 50s. For many American families, affordable Long-Term Care Insurance is the solution. The policy will pay for the care needed that is otherwise not paid for by health insurance and Medicare.
Start your research by reading The Ultimate Long-Term Care Guide.
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Managing Cognitive Impairments In Parkinsons
After a thorough evaluation to rule out other causes of cognitive impairment, patients with PD may be treated with medication, occupational therapy, and/or speech therapy. The medications used to treat cognitive impairments in people with PD are based on treatments used for Alzheimers disease. Occupational therapy can help a person with PD by providing adaptive strategies for daily activities. Speech therapy can help with language functions, as well as information processing. 3,4
Memory Loss Cause # 5 Depression And Also Anxiety
Serious clinical depression or grief can occasionally cause forgetfulness and also amnesia, along with generally influencing your capacity to concentrate. Feelings of despair, extreme pain at the loss of a loved one, and other emotional trauma can result in sensation inaccessible, or in a fog and forgetting small details..
Anxiety influences in between 3% and 15% of older adults, according to Mental Health America, as well as current studies reveal that 2.2% of senior citizens report major emotional distress during the 30 days before the survey. Those aged 45-65 reported distress 4.4% of the moment, and likewise report a high level of anxiety. There are numerous traumatic signs of anxiety, including:.
Breast discomforts.Lightheadedness.Worry of passing away.
There are lots of reasons an individual can become distressed, from family problems, life adjustments, money concerns, and health fears. No matter the factor behind your anxiety, there are a selection of methods you can deal with your difficult sensations in the house, and alternatives for when clinical depression and stress and anxiety end up being tough to live with:.
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What Causes Parkinson Disease
Parkinson disease arises from decreased dopamine production in the brain. The absence of dopamine makes it hard for the brain to coordinate muscle movements. Low dopamine also contributes to mood and cognitive problems later in the course of the disease. Experts don’t know what triggers the development of Parkinson disease most of the time. Early onset Parkinson disease is often inherited and is the result of certain gene defects.
Seeking Help For Cognitive Changes
Cognitive change is a sensitive issue. In fact, the doctor is often as hesitant to address this subject as the person with PD is to ask about it. Sometimes, the doctor will delay discussing cognitive impairment out of concern for the person who is still coping with the shock of a new PD diagnosis or struggling with motor symptoms.
For this reason, the person with PD often needs to be the one to initiate the conversation. Tell your doctor if you or your loved one is experiencing problems that upset the family or cause interruptions at work.
Cognitive issues are never too mild to address with your care team. A doctor can provide ways to help, often, referring psychiatrist, neuropsychologist, speech or occupational therapist for further evaluation and assistance. The neuropsychological evaluation can be particularly useful, especially in the early stages of a cognitive problem. Having this baseline test can help the doctor determine whether future changes are related to medications, the progression of the PD itself or to other factors such as depression.
When reporting symptoms of mild cognitive impairment, the doctor will first want to rule out causes other than PD, such as Vitamin B-12 deficiency, depression, fatigue or sleep disturbances. It should be noted that PD does not cause sudden changes in mental functioning. If a sudden change occurs, the cause is likely to be something else, such as a medication side-effect.
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Clinical Value Of The Present Findings
Our PD participants had problems in WM updating that were unrelated to their other cognitive difficulties, such as prolonged response latencies, difficulties in maintaining attention and inhibiting irrelevant information, and episodic memory deficits. As compared to other WM subdomains, updating was the only subdomain that clearly discriminated PD patients from healthy controls even when no other problems were considered. Altogether, these findings suggest that the WM subdomain of updating should receive particular attention when surveying onset cognitive deficits in PD patients. However, further test development is needed to utilize this knowledge in practice, as standardized, readily available measures of WM updating are lacking.
Memory Loss Cause # 1 Poor Sleep
The ordinary adult rests in between 7 and 8.5 hrs each night, and provided the amount of duties we often tend to handle during the day, it can be very easy to slip on the requirement for a good nights sleep. Yet, one of the biggest factors to short term memory loss along with bigger memory concerns is just not getting sufficient rest. Studies show that about half of grownups in the United States have sleep disruptions, varying from sleep problems to shortened resting hrs as well as nighttime waking.
Sleep problems tend to worsen as we march on right into aging- in a current study of 2,500 men, those over age 70 had a 50% higher chance of having sleep problems than those aged 55. While males aged 55 reported rest disruptions more frequently than females, individuals aged 70 as well as older of both sexes reported comparable prices of sleeplessness and also other issues. An additional issue that tends to aggravate sleep concerns is economic variation- those staying in poverty have a higher incident of rest disturbances, especially those with wellness problems as an underlying source of their sleep loss. An additional element influencing sleep and also memory is alcohol- recent studies on alcohol addiction throughout different age show that sleep is most influenced by alcohol in those over age 65..
If you have trouble resting, the complying with suggestions may help you treat or curb sleep problems:.
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Dementia Doesn’t Always Mean Alzheimer’s
Dementia is any memory loss or thinking problem caused by changes in your brain. Alzheimer’s is just one type. Your memory also can be harmed by many other health issues, such as a stroke, Parkinson’s disease, or a buildup of fluid on your brain.
If you notice symptoms that have you concerned, see a doctor right away. They’ll give you a thorough exam that may include taking a sample of your blood for testing, brain imaging, and neurological testing to figure out what’s going on with your health and get you help.
What Causes Cognitive Changes In People With Pd
One cause is a drop in the level of dopamine, the neurotransmitter that is involved in regulating the bodys movements. However, the cognitive changes associated with dopamine declines are typically mild and restricted.
Other brain changes are likely also involved in cognitive decline in PD. Scientists are looking at changes in two other chemical messengers acetylcholine and norepinephrine as possible additional causes of memory and executive function loss in Parkinsons.
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Associations Between Cognitive Deficits And Psychiatric Symptoms
Neither everyday cognition nor psychiatric symptoms were correlated with WM performance in the PD group. These findings support the existence of subjective cognitive decline in PD , suggesting that objectively measured cognitive performance, subjectively experienced cognitive problems, and affective symptoms arise from distinct underlying factors. This is the case in WM as well. Lack of correlation between subjective cognitive complaints and task performance has also been observed in some previous studies with other cognitive measures . Our study further indicates that both everyday cognitive difficulties and affective symptoms are linked to PD symptoms, indicating that the various types of difficulties in daily living could have a common origin that perhaps relates to psychiatric well-being. Cognitive difficulties directly related to PD and those associated with a decline in global cognitive abilities could, in turn, have different underlying mechanisms. As noted above, our findings suggest a direct link between PD and WM updating, while more widespread WM deficits may occur in parallel with global cognitive decline.