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Rethinking Alzheimer’s Prevention and Treatment: The Cognitive Shop/ Brain Fitness Center

Editor’s note:
Ken­neth S. Kosik, MD, and Ellen Clegg, authors of a recent book on Alzheimer’s Dis­ease pre­ven­tion and treat­ment, force­ful­ly pro­pose a new frame­work and mod­el for brain care: What about set­ting up “cog­ni­tive shops” as “a sort of one-stop shop­ping for every­thing from Alzheimer’s dis­ease pre­ven­tion to guid­ed care for mild or mod­er­ate dis­ease”. What fol­lows is the thought-pro­vok­ing con­clu­sion sec­tion from their book “The Alzheimer’s Solu­tion. How Today’s Care Is Fail­ing Mil­lions and How We Can Do Bet­ter” (repro­duced with per­mis­sion), not very dif­fer­ent from the “brain fit­ness cen­ter” mod­el we have talked about in the past.

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Chap­ter 10. CONCLUSIONS

Just as the idea of hos­pice care rev­o­lu­tion­ized death and dying in Amer­i­ca, the idea of bundling many aspects of Alzheimer’s care under one roof in a cog­ni­tive shop could change the way we approach this dire disease—one that has no cure and leaves no sur­vivors. Cer­tain­ly, the scope of the prob­lem pos­es med­ical and eco­nom­ic risks for the coun­try. These risks, and poten­tial steps for a solu­tion, were chart­ed by the bipar­ti­san Alzheimer Study Group in the spring of 2009. The report, issued by the Alzheimer Study Group co-chaired by for­mer con­gress­man Newt Gin­grich and for­mer sen­a­tor Bob Ker­rey, minces few words. Read the rest of this entry »

Alzheimer’s Disease: Treatment Directions

Last year, Jef­frey Gonce, a Psy­chol­o­gy teacher at Red Land High School (West Shore School Dis­trict, PA) asked his stu­dents to “com­plete a project describ­ing a recent brain (or genet­ic) study that affects behav­ior.” The stu­dents could opt to post their arti­cles online, and Jef­frey was kind enough to send us a link to read the results. We enjoyed read­ing them all, and pub­lished in our blog this beau­ti­ful essay, titled “Tis bet­ter to give than receive”, writ­ten by Alexan­dra, which  was sub­se­quent­ly includ­ed in a num­ber of neu­ro­science an psy­chol­o­gy blogs. Ear­li­er this year we high­light­ed this piece on Musi­cal train­ing as men­tal exer­cise for cog­ni­tive per­for­mance, writ­ten by Megan.

This quar­ter, Jef­frey also sent us his stu­dents’ essays, and we are going to rec­og­nize and pub­lish this great essay by high school stu­dent Kristin H.

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Alzheimer’s Dis­ease

– By Kristin H.

Alzheimer’s is a dis­ease which caus­es peo­ple, gen­er­al­ly of an old­er age, to lose mem­o­ry and for­get how to accom­plish sim­ple tasks. Demen­tia is the dis­ease which Alzheimer’s is a part and about four mil­lion Amer­i­cans were diag­nosed with Alzheimer’s in 1999, a num­ber which is expect­ed to grow (Alt­man 8–9). Demen­tia is an unspe­cif­ic brain dis­ease com­mon­ly asso­ci­at­ed with mem­o­ry loss and anoth­er seri­ous brain dys­func­tion. Demen­tia is an incur­able dis­ease (“Demen­tia”). A new drug treat­ment that replaces the enzyme miss­ing in an Alzheimer’s brain may be able to cure Alzheimer’s dis­ease in it’s late stages (Cogh­lan).

Read the rest of this entry »

Cognitive Psychology readings

Kevin brings a new edi­tion of the IQs Cor­ner Head­lines from the Brain and Mind Blog­sphere. Worth read­ing if you are inter­est­ed in cog­ni­tive and edu­ca­tion­al psy­chol­o­gy.

A few recent blog car­ni­vals: the always great Tan­gled Bank (Gen­er­al Sci­ence), and new edi­tions of Brain Blog­ging and Atten­tion Deficit Dis­or­der.

Have a great cel­e­bra­tion today!

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