Entries by John Schmid

Tactile Stimulation and the Brain

Fidgeting, holding and playing with things, becomes an obsession with many people who have dementia, and the sensory feedback to the brain is at least part of the reason why. It is not entirely different from babies and small children being obsessed with exploring with their hands and mouths. It is important to provide tactile stimulation to those in your care.

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Conditions That Mimic Alzheimer’s (Why Early Diagnosis is Important)

There are many reasons to get an early and accurate diagnosis if you suspect dementia. Included: treatment is sometimes more effective when started early, early diagnosis gives one time to get affairs in order, and diagnosis might be more accurate if done early. Most importantly, there are many diseases and conditions that mimic Alzheimer’s disease as well as the symptoms associated with most other causes of dementia. Many of these are treatable and even curable!


UCLA Study Finds Certain Lifestyle Choices Reduce Plaques and Tangles in the Brain

A study, published Aug. 16, 2016 in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, found that certain lifestyle factors reduce the amount of amyloid plaque and fibrillary tangles in the brain. These plaques and tangles are always present in the Alzheimer’s affected brain. The group at UCLA found that the brains of subjects who followed a Mediterranean diet and exercised regularly had fewer plaques and tangles than those who did not.

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Music and the Brain

It is an exciting time for the science of neurology and brain study. I read recently that we have learned more about the brain in the last five years than in the five thousand years previous. Recent advances in brain-imaging technology have given us some incredible tools for studying this most complex structure in the known universe: tools like the fMRI, the EEG, SPECT scan, and CT scan and the PET scan. These special tools allow us to watch electrical activity and blood flow in the brain as it responds to different stimuli and situations. One thing we are learning is there is a special connection between music and the brain.


Adaptive Clothing for Alzheimer’s Dementia

As hard as it may be to believe, there is an entirely new concept in fashion design. Advancing age as well as certain medical and physical conditions make dressing oneself difficult, even with another’s help. Immobility makes it hard for a carer to assist in dressing. However,  several clothing manufacturers, including Tommy Hilfiger, are stepping up to with answers to this problem.  Adaptive clothing lines help people with a variety of disabilities to dress themselves, and help care providers to more easily and more effectively do their job.

Brainpaths for Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Brainpaths® is a unique concept. It is based on the fact that each of our fingertips contain more than 3000 nerve receptors that connect directly to our brains. As the grooves in the discs are traced repeatedly with the fingers, those receptors send messages to the somatosensory cortex in the parietal lobe of the brain. Sensory stimulation like this can modify the structure of the brain.

Alzheimer’s Symptoms

It is not easy to accept the possibility that you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, but early diagnosis can be important. The sooner you know, the sooner you can start planning for the future, and the sooner you can begin exploring treatment options. Medical and non-medical therapies may delay or […]