Alzheimer’s, one of the widely known neurodegenerative diseases, has gotten quite the reputation of being a savage destroyer of one’s memories and selfhood. In fact, there are more than 5. 5 million Americans today living with Alzheimer’s. And one of the things that really scares about this disease is the gradual change in people’s behaviors
And that’s the thing with neurodegenerative diseases; they can truly be dangerous. In fact, other types like the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis can result in difficulty in movement, speaking, breathing, and eventually swallowing. However, one thing that seems to stand out is that no matter the severity, these neurodegenerative diseases don’t seem to disrupt the fabric of selfhood itself.
Which begs the question; is memory truly related to identity? Indeed, quite a number of scientists and experts deemed this to be so. For what captures our personality more than the memories that gradually build our reality?
So let’s dig a little deeper…
Studies today show that this initial school of thought has its shortcomings for quite a number of reasons. For starters, neurodegenerative diseases affect quite a number of different neurological components; we’re talking visual perception, intelligence, language, personality, emotion and moral behavior; just to mention a few. And one thing is for certain, all of these play a critical role in both securing and determining a person’s identity.
Therefore, the challenge is in identifying the main parts of your mind that actively contribute to your identity, and if these parts have been affected by the neurodegenerative disease. One thing we have to understand is that these diseases affect many parts of the cognitive system, and manifest differently from one patient to the next in terms of symptoms.
For example, let’s have a look at Alzheimer’s. In some patients, they experience memory loss while others experience a sudden personality change; and others as much as impaired visual recognition.
So the only way to really determine which changes really affect one’s identity is to compare the numerous symptoms across different diseases.
What does the research tell us…
A study published in Psychological Science found quite a startling revelation. That the single most powerful disruptor of identity was not the disruption of memory, but rather the disruption of moral faculty.
For example, Frontotemporal dementia was found to deteriorate the primary functions of the brain thus disrupting one’s self-control as well as the clambering of one’s moral compass. Hence, you’ll find that persons with the disease will have a higher chance of outbursts, sexual infidelity, apathy as well as pathological lying.
Hence, the people that exhibited the highest degree of identity change were those suffering from dementia while those that exhibited the least were patients of A.L.S. Patients suffering from Alzheimer’s were found to be in between the two extremes.
It was further found that those who suffered greater disruptions in moral faculty exhibited extreme changes in both their mental and visual perceptions; leading to a feeling that they were truly unlike themselves. This disrupted their ability to perform even their basic daily tasks.
The Alzheimer’s conclusion…
With Alzheimer’s, it was discovered that no type or degree of memory impairment resulted in any effect of their identity. Hence, if their moral capacities remained intact, then there identity was not affected in any way.
So as dangerous as neurodegenerative diseases are, it’s pretty clear that their effects of identity loss have greatly been blown up. Surprisingly, an Alzheimer’s patient can greatly undergo numerous cognitive changes and still remain largely the same person. Which clearly shows that what really changes our identity is not an alteration in our cognitive changes, but rather a change in how we view our moral universe and the people around us!
Our Parting Shot…
Thus, with effective treatment from DrJamesFarley.com, we ensure to provide essential management in handling the development of Alzheimer’s and ensuring that you remain healthy by controlling and decelerating the progression of the disease. So contact us today for effective Alzheimer’s disease treatment and we will straightaway put you on our program!
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Cognitive changes
- Alzheimer’s and identity
- Alzheimer’s and identity
- So let’s dig a little deeper
- What does the research tell us
- The Alzheimer’s conclusion
- Our Parting shot