ppa

primary progressive aphasia

Anne Theresa Adams

Though interested in drawing and painting from an early age, much of Anne Adams' adult life was spent in left-brain activities. Obtaining a PhD degree in cell biology from UBC in 1982, Anne held teaching and research positions until one of her children was seriously injured in a car accident late in 1986. Thinking he would need years of specialized care, she gave up academia and decided to take up painting as a full time career. As it turned out, her son made a miraculous recovery within two months, but Anne resolved to continue with her art.

Though interested in drawing and painting from an early age, much of Anne Adams' adult life was spent in left-brain activities. Born in Toronto in 1940, she graduated with an Honors BSc in Physics and Chemistry from the University of Toronto in 1962 and taught at that institution for a couple of years until her first child with husband Robert was born in 1964. The family moved to Vancouver in 1966 where Robert became a Professor of Mathematics at the University of British Columbia.

Director's Interest

An integral component of the Memory and Aging Center’s research mission is to understand various complex functions of the brain. As such, many individuals at the Memory and Aging Center are fascinated by the creative brain and hope to gain a greater understanding of the creative mind.

“Creativity is our species’ natural response
to the challenges of human experience.”
~ Adriana Diaz

Neuroscience research in the past several decades has increased the understanding of human brain functions particularly emotion, perception, and behavior. An integral component of the Memory and Aging Center’s research mission is to understand various complex functions of the brain. As such, many individuals at the Memory and Aging Center are fascinated by the creative brain and hope to gain a greater understanding of the creative mind.

Emotions

Emotional and behavioral symptoms are common in dementia and can be major sources of stress to patients and their caregivers.

Emotional and behavioral symptoms are common in dementia and can be major sources of stress to patients and their caregivers. Some of the most common emotional and behavioral changes associated with dementia are:

  • Apathy and Indifference—lack of motivation to start new activities and continue old ones, reduced participation in household chores, loss of interest in talking to other people, becoming less affectionate and emotionally expressive.

Impact of Neurological Illness

Speech and language difficulty commonly affects individuals with dementia and other neurological conditions. Patients may experience deficits in the form of verbal expression (i.e., word-finding difficulty) or comprehension (i.e., difficulty understanding speech).

Alzheimer’s disease (AD)

Disorders of Speech & Language

Aphasia is the term used to describe an acquired loss of language that causes problems with any or all of the following: speaking, listening, reading and writing.

Aphasia is the term used to describe an acquired loss of language that causes problems with any or all of the following: speaking, listening, reading and writing. Some people with aphasia have trouble using words and sentences (expressive aphasia). Some have problems understanding others (receptive aphasia). Others with aphasia struggle with both using words and understanding (global aphasia). Aphasia can cause problems with spoken language (talking and understanding) and written language (reading and writing).

Primary Progressive Aphasia

Primary progressive aphasia is caused by degeneration in the areas of the brain that control speech and language. This type of aphasia begins gradually, with speech or language symptoms that will vary depending on the brain areas affected by the disease.

What is primary progressive aphasia (PPA)?

Practical Tips for Daily Life

Activities of daily living are divided into two major categories. The first, often called instrumental activities, includes more complex types of activities such as paying bills, shopping, managing medications, working and driving. The second category is activities related to personal care and include eating, bathing, dressing, getting in or out of bed or a chair and using the toilet. In the beginning of the disease, the patient will have trouble completing the instrumental, complex activities. As the disease progresses, the person will have difficulty managing the more basic functions and will need help from caregivers.

Topics

Alleviating Symptoms

Living with the symptoms of neurodegenerative disease can be frustrating, difficult and even scary. The first step is to recognize that these behaviors are part of the changes in the brain. The person has little or no control over them and isn't behaving this way on purpose. Often times, behavioral and environmental changes can help prevent or stop these behaviors. For some symptoms, medication may be helpful.

Aggression

Aggressive behavior may become more common in some forms of dementia due to the brain’s inability to control impulsive actions.

Tips for preventing aggression

  1. Ensure the person does not have pain and see the person's regular doctor for any illness. A change in behavioral symptoms may be triggered by even minor illnesses such as a cold or by pain such as arthritis.
  2. When talking to the person, do not use sarcasm or abstract thinking. Instead, be concrete.
  3. Reduce external distractions when talking, e.g., TV, radio, busy places.
Syndicate content