"We have conducted research on patients, who are regularly treated at our policlinic for dementia," Mehmet Ilkin Naharcı told Anadolu Agency ahead of Sept. 21 World Alzheimer's Day.
"In our research, we found out that Alzheimer is the most common type among dementia types and these patients live an average of four years or 12 years after the diagnosis," Naharcı said, adding that Alzheimer is the most destructive dementia type which manifests itself with the impairment of cognitive skills.
He said dementia occurs with ageing and it is a progressive brain disease that causes various mental and behavioural disorders, especially forgetfulness.
Among the symptoms of the disease are learning disability, speech disorder, forgetting the location of the house, not being able to recognize people, indetermination and uneasiness, indifference, aggression, sleep disorder, hallucination and depression, Naharcı said.
He noted Alzheimer is not a contagious or genetic disease. However, he added that there might be a slight level of family predisposition.
The researcher said among the risk factors are smoking and consuming alcohol, hypertension, diabetes, vessel stiffness, skull fracture, depression, low socioeconomic and education level.
In the early stage of the disease, the individual suffers forgetfulness, losing objects and dejection, he said.
Naharcı said in the middle stage, patients cannot recognize people, need help in cleaning themselves and dressing, lose their way, suffer from a speech disorder, hallucination and depression.
In further stages, the individual cannot recognize family members, has difficulty in eating and walking, becomes bedbound and suffers from incontinence.
Naharcı noted that care for these people is of great importance and said: "The patient's sufferings can be reduced by appropriate and accurate care."
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