November 10, 2022 by
Finding a cure for Alzheimer’s has become as tangled as the tau threads long thought to be the root cause of the disease. Now, however, researchers may be drawing a step closer to unraveling the mystery of Alzheimer’s disease, aboard a different train of thought. The latest research on Alzheimer’s is pointing to the possibility of an inflammatory response in the brain, which poses the question: could Alzheimer’s disease actually be an autoimmune disorder?
Seasonal allergy, rheumatoid arthritis, and Crohn’s disease sufferers know all too well the effects of an overactive immune system. In a perfect world, our immunity protects us from bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens that need to be eliminated. With an autoimmune disease, however, antibodies attack healthy, non-invasive cells, causing inflammation and other unpleasant effects.
In previous Alzheimer’s disease research, those infamous amyloid plaques have been the focus. Yet we also know that even in healthy brains, these plaques are present and are hypothesized to perform some type of helpful purpose. The immune system targets these plaques, destroying them and possibly healthy cells in the process: indicative of a possible autoimmune response.
This unconventional new approach to studying and developing treatment options for Alzheimer’s has earned lead author of the research, Don Weaver, MD, PhD, of the Krembil Brain Institute, the 2022 Oskar Fischer Prize, which “recognizes innovative ideas in Alzheimer’s research that look beyond prevailing theories.”
For the rest of us, it offers hope that a cure for the disease that impacts so many may be on the horizon. The latest research on Alzheimer’s shows promise and the work continues to make progress. In the meantime, turn to At Home Independent Living for skilled, creative, and compassionate dementia care services that help those living with Alzheimer’s disease continue to live to their fullest potential in the homes they love. Our well-trained, professional caregivers are adept in helping those with dementia and the families who love them better manage some of the more troubling aspects of the disease, such as:
- Wandering and wanting to go “home”
- Aggression, agitation, and other strong and difficult emotions
- Increased unease in the late afternoon and overnight hours (sundowning)
- Repetitive behaviors and conversations
- Memory loss
- And more
We will work with your family to provide as much or as little care as needed to ensure you have the breaks from caregiving you need for your own health and wellbeing. After all, caring for someone with dementia is never a one-person task; it’s best managed as a team effort, especially as the disease progresses. Taking time away for self-care and to recharge is incredibly important for you and your family as well as for your loved one with dementia. A well-rested caregiver is generally more patient, less prone to mistakes, and better equipped to provide the level of care an older adult with dementia needs and deserves.
Contact At Home Independent Living at (315) 579-HOME (4663) for additional dementia care resources, and to schedule a free in-home consultation. Learn more about options for respite care in Clay, NY and surroundings areas, and how our dementia care experts can help maximize quality of life for someone you love. Please see our full service area.