Brain Awareness Week is a great opportunity to learn more about brain health. This is especially important for those who are caring for a loved one with dementia. The more aware you are, the better care you can provide.
First, a few brain facts you’ll find interesting:
- Our brains contain the richest network of blood vessels.
- Up to 50% of oxygen and be used when are brains are working their hardest.
- The right side of the brain cortex controls the left side of the body and the left controls the right.
- Our brains are comprised of about 100 billion nerve cells.
- Neurotransmitters carry signals to other cells by traveling across synapses.
- Alzheimer’s disease causes clusters of protein (plaques) to build up between nerve cells.
- These plaques and tangles cause cell death and tissue loss.
- This disrupts the activity of the neurotransmitters, which begins to impair memory and thought processes.
There is a wealth of information about brain function available from The Alzheimer’s Association. They have even put together a “brain tour” which explains how the brain works and how it is impacted by Alzheimer’s disease. You can take the tour here.
Research has shown that engaging in brain stimulating activities, along with exercise and a diet of brain healthy foods can help individuals with dementia retain cognition levels longer. In fact, it’s good for everyone!
Here are some helpful links to learn more:
Awareness is the first step towards keeping our brains as healthy as possible and leading a healthier, happier life. Make it a point to keep up to date by taking advantage of the resources available to you. And feel free to reach out to any of our Anthem communities for more information. We’re always happy to help!