Home Repair Helps Your Brain

Dorian Martin Health Guide
  • For most of January, I've had some unwelcome visitors. Turns out three rats found entry into my home and have gorged themselves on my dog's food and other things (like bristles of a hairbrush) that they've found edible. Suffice to say, it hasn't been a fun experience and this trio has proven much more industrious and cagey than I would have thought possible.


    So in the past two weeks, I've had folks come over to determine where these critters have been getting in and how to close up the entryways. One contractor came over to give me an estimate on repairing some rot on my home's wood siding. Walking around the house, he pointed out a fairly large hole in the wood that I hadn't noticed since I hadn't been outside recently due to cold and rainy weather and a fairly regular travel schedule. "I bet that's one area where they are getting in," he said, promising to get a bid to me soon on the cost to fix these areas.

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    So why write about this on a website dedicated to Alzheimer's? A recent news report published in the Feb. 7 issue of Nature reminded me that regular vigilance is necessary not only in keeping my home repaired, but also in maintaining my brain. Research out of Massachusetts General Hospital's Institute for Neurodegenerative Disease indicates that Alzheimer's plaques can form in one day. "They form more rapidly than expected," Dr. Bradley Hyman, the director of the research team, was quoted as saying. He added that once the plaques develop, damage is evident in nearby nerve cells immediately.


    After watching my mom's struggles over the past two years as well as those of her fellow residents, my awareness of what I may face in the future has heightened my knowledge about what I need to do to take care of my health. However, like many people, I'm not perfect about my daily self-care regimen. Some days I forget to take my vitamins. I put off exercising on occasion due to flimsy excuses. Junk food at times is more appetizing than fruits, vegetables, or salmon.


    This research has gotten my attention in a big way. I am doing everything to deal with the rats in the house, but what if similar vermin are stalking around in my body making plans to invade my brain? I need to become much more vigilant in focusing on health prevention and maintenance than I have in the past. With this report highlighting how such Alzheimer's plaques can develop in just 24 hours means that a day is not just a day anymore; instead, what happens in this period of time can impact an eternity.


    So I hope you'll join with me in taking the necessary steps in order to be vigilant in closing up the holes in our diet, exercise, stress management and self-care regimens to keep these pesky plaques out! We can't waste a day!

Published On: February 08, 2008