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Aspirus Health shares signs and symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s disease

Change in memory is normal as we age. Sometimes that change becomes worrisome as a parent, grandparent or loved one begins having difficulty communicating. June is Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month – an opportunity to hold a conversation about the brain, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, and raise awareness about this growing health issue.

“The number of people living with Alzheimer’s disease is growing,” said Dr. Robyn Gilbertson, family medicine specialist with Aspirus Stevens Point Clinic. “Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are irreversible. Both are brain disorders that slowly destroy memory and thinking skills.”

The Alzheimer’s Association estimates 6.2 million people of all ages have Alzheimer’s disease in the United States.

Every day, thousands of families are forever changed by Alzheimer’s disease. Aspirus Health offers some signs and symptoms to keep top of mind:

  • Memory loss that disrupts daily activities.
  • Challenges in solving problems or learning new things.
  • Difficulty completing familiar tasks.
  • Misplacing things and the inability to retrace steps.
  • Trouble handling money or paying bills.
  • Mood and personality changes.
  • Wandering or getting lost.

Research suggests certain things can help your brain stay young as you grow older. Dr. Gilbertson shares these tips to keep your brain healthy:

  • Exercise regularly.
  • Get plenty of sleep.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet.
  • Remain socially involved and active.
  • Protect your head.
  • Avoid tobacco and alcohol.

“Research shows using your muscles also helps keep your mind healthy,” Dr. Gilbertson said. “Those who exercise regularly increase the oxygen to the region of the brain that is responsible for thoughts.”

Dr. Gilbertson and many other Aspirus Health primary care providers care for patients with Alzheimer’s disease and memory disorders. For an appointment with Dr. Gilbertson, call Aspirus Stevens Point Clinic at 715.344.1600. To find a clinic and provider in another area, visit aspirus.org or call the Aspirus Customer Contact Center at 800-847-4707.