Expert says activities that keep the brain busy can delay dementia

According to renowned psychiatrist Dr NN Raju, the best way to prevent brain degeneration in dementia patients is to involve them in exercises like solving puzzles, increasing blood supply to the brain through physical exercise and avoiding alcohol and smoking. Former Superintendent of Government Hospital for Mental Care.

Speaking at an awareness program on ‘Smriti-Vismriti’ organized by Kaushalya Counseling Center on the occasion of World Alzheimer’s Day at the Public Library in Dwarkanagar here on September 21 (Thursday), he said that there is no change in the behavior of persons above 60 years of age. Also changes with aging such as inability to perform routine tasks such as buttoning a shirt and expressing fear of the unseen and unknown without reason should be considered dementia.

People suffering from lifestyle diseases like high blood pressure and diabetes should be more careful as they have a higher risk of developing dementia in old age as they will have less blood supply to the brain which accelerates the degeneration process.

He explained that the hippocampus and amygdale, two small parts beneath the brain’s cortex, help in learning, storage, processing and retrieval of information. Dementia begins when the brain becomes damaged due to disease, injury, or gradual degeneration due to old age.

Dr. Raju said that about 90 lakh Indians above 60 years of age are suffering from dementia. He said that World Alzheimer’s Day is celebrated every year to make the public aware about this condition. This year’s theme was “Never Too Late, Never Too Late.”

Consultant psychiatrist Dr NG Nihal moderated the discussion.

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