Cognitive impairment

Specialty of Neurology

What is a cognitive impairment?

The concept of cognitive impairment encompasses an alteration in one or more of the cognitive functions for processing and remembering information, including perception, attention, language and memory. The most frequent cognitive alterations include delirium, amnesia, dementia, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Some acquired impairments and disorders also cause cognitive impairment (such as stroke or head injury). Cognitive developmental disorders that affect the area of language and attention, such as ADHD, are also common in children.

Symptoms of cognitive impairment:

These disorders often begin to manifest themselves as difficulties with attention, concentration and orientation. When the disorder progresses, there is also a breakdown in thought processes and perception. Other common symptoms of these conditions are difficulty walking and maintaining balance, drowsiness, tiredness, personality changes, and an inability to remember things.

What causes cognitive impairment?

Old age is the main cause of cognitive impairment, but how you reach old age determines whether or not you will develop it. Loss of social relationships influence the development of this disorder, since social isolation can result in poor self-care and memory loss. Psychological changes also influence cognitive disorders, as stress and depression wear out neurons and lead to memory loss.

Can cognitive impairment be prevented?

To prevent cognitive impairment, it is important to do stimulating exercises that keep the cognitive functions active. These usually include daily activities like reading the newspaper, keeping accounts or doing crossword puzzles. You should also maintain relationships with your family and friends and watch the news so that you know what’s going on around you.

How can cognitive impairment be treated?

An early diagnosis of these pathologies is important so that the most appropriate treatment can be started as soon as possible to prevent further deterioration. Treatment includes cognitive stimulation, eating a healthy diet, and regular physical exercise.

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