Reddit AMA Outlines 8 Things You Should Know About Alzheimer’s
Behavioral Neurologist and Cognitive Neuroscientist addresses common questions and myths about the disease
In honor of World Alzheimer’s Month, Dr. Andrew Budson — Associate Director for Research at the Boston University Alzheimer’s Disease Center and Professor of Neurology at Boston University School of Medicine — took to Reddit to share his research and knowledge around Alzheimer’s. Dr. Budson has coauthored five books that center on Alzheimer’s disease and other associated disorders, most recently Seven Steps to Managing Your Memory, which he pulled advice and expertise from throughout the conversation. Here are the top eight takeaways.
1) Having a bad memory does not mean that you are more at risk for dementia.
In the most anxiety-reducing comment yet according to one Redditor, Dr. Budson clarifies that simply having a bad memory does not increase an individual’s likelihood of suffering from dementia.
2) Alzheimer’s is not only present when an individual has memory problems that impact daily life.
Dr. Budson myth-busts common misconceptions about Alzheimer’s — and shares advice for addressing Alzheimer’s with family members.
3) Pictures are a wonderful way to interact with someone with Alzheimer’s.
According to research, people understand and remember information in a picture better than words alone.
4) Aerobic exercise and the Mediterranean diet can help combat Alzheimer’s.
Dr. Budson shares easy lifestyle changes and medicines that help slow the progress of Alzheimer’s. He explains how current medications can’t stop the clock from ticking down — but can turn the clock back by six to twelve months on the disease.
5) Sleep is critical for memory.
Dr. Budson outlines three ways sleep correlates to memory — and why sleep is so important.
6) Alzheimer’s patients can be aware of their condition.
Check out the blog Dr. Budson’s colleague wrote about his experience since being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s here.
7) Family history impacts risk of Alzheimer’s.
One topic that came up throughout the conversation was the degree to which Alzheimer’s is a genetic disease.
8) Alzheimer’s and Dementia are different.
Dr. Budson explains how Alzheimer’s and dementia are different but connected.
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