COGNITIVE DECLINE

THANK HEAVENS WE CAN LAUGH AT OURSELVES!

I was so engrossed in commenting on other posts, I forgot the focus for this post.  My forgetting is rather apt, because the post is about memory loss. The article that took my interest on this subject was still open on my desk top and so reminded me what I intended to do. Should I be personally concerned at needing a memory aid?

People go to collect something from, say, a drawer,and forget what it was they wanted. It is quite a common event. There are sillier forgetfulnesses and distractions, such as putting something in the oven instead of the fridge. Thank heavens we can laugh at ourselves! Lots of people have done it. Is it really funny?

There could be a range of reasons for increased confusions and exacerbated memory loss, especially in older people. Infection is certainly one possibility, there are others.

For now, there does not seem to be any magic answer for the prevention of chronic cognitive decline. Research is indicating that body infections may speed up memory decline, especially in Alzheimers disease.

Researchers at Southampton University say that infections increase an inflammatory protein in the blood, known as a tumour necrosis factor (TNF). The obvious defensive responses to this, are good observation, devising fast action to deal with suspected infections, and providing skilled care, especially in residential, nursing homes and hospitals. Preventing infections from spreading is nigh impossible.

This is the point where it is necessary to think outside the box (lateral thinking). It is where the researchers and pharmacological experts join forces. One thought is to try to protect the human system by blocking TNF to prevent more inflammation of the brain. Research into cognitive decline is a growth area. TNF is just one aspect of it and like many others, needs further research.

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