Neurodegenerative Diseases

Neurodegenerative diseases are conditions in which cells of the brain and the peripheral nervous system progressively lose function and die. A consistent loss of nerve cells gradually impairs cognitive functioning along with motor skills. There are no known cures for neurodegenerative diseases but there are treatments that help mitigate mental and physical symptoms.

The treatment of neurodegenerative disorders using principals of clinical neuroscience primarily revolves around the concept of neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of your brain to grow and reorganize neural networks. Depending on the findings of an examination, the neural pathways involved in the exhibited symptoms could require intricately designed stimulation in order to restore balance and improve function.

Common Neurodegenerative Diseases

Parkinson's disease being treated at Broadview Centre in Ottawa

What is Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s disease occurs when there is degeneration to an area of the brain that controls voluntary movement as well as voluntary stillness. Aside from affecting the way a person moves, it can eventually affect a person’s ability to think and interact with others. Common symptoms include: tremors, slowness of movement and thought, stiffness, digestion issues, poor balance, and difficulty walking. As this disease progresses, dementia may occur in the advanced stages of the disease.

Dr. Lawrence recommends the following link to use as a tool to monitor daily-life-relevant parameters of Parkinson’s Disease: Scoring Parkinson’s – Test Yourself!

Multiple Sclerosis treatment

What is Multiple Sclerosis?

Multiple Sclerosis has been found to be a disease of immune system malfunction. In effect, the immune system attacks its own healthy tissue; in particular, the protective covering around the nerve cells in the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves. In some instances toxic levels of mercury in the system can mimic MS symptoms.

Common symptoms include pins and needles, tingling, increased reflexes, muscle weakness and spasms, poor balance, visual problems, problems with speech or swallowing, pain, low energy and difficulty going to the bathroom.

an elderly lady that struggles from Alzheimer's deep in thought

What is Alzheimers Disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common neurodegenerative disease and is classified as a type of dementia. It begins with mild memory loss and progressively gets worse to the point where it debilitates ones ability to respond to their environment. The cause of Alzheimer’s is still unknown, but there are several known risk factors such as: age, family history, inadequate physical activity, an unhealthy diet, and substance abuse.

Alzheimer’s disease is associated with parts of that brain that regulate language, memory, and thought. The neurodegenerative disorder also exhibits a variety of physical symptoms – loss of coordination, muscle weakness & fatigue, and a loss of voluntary muscle control.

Man being using a walker for his neuro disorder

What Is Progressive Supranuclear Palsy?

Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP) causes gradual demise of the brain over time. In particular, the cells controlling body movement and thinking are affected. Symptoms can include changes in personality, slurred speech, falls, difficulty swallowing, problems with eye movement, visual problems and memory loss.

PSP and Parkinson’s disease share a lot of similar symptoms, so much so that PSP is often misdiagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Interventions for the two neurodegenerative diseases vary, so it’s important to understand exactly what you are dealing with. Talk with our professional team about scheduling a thorough examination to provide you with a proper diagnosis and an effective treatment plan.

Treatments for Neurodegenerative Diseases at Centre for Brain Health Ottawa

Owing to the broad array of neurodegenerative disorders and their different causes, we may use a combination of therapies that could include diet and lifestyle changes, specific supplementation, oculomotor and balance therapy, plus different modalities, such as pons stimulation, which may aid in improving the quality of life for those suffering with these disorders.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Neurodegenerative diseases are incurable conditions in which nerve cells gradually lose function and in turn, impair motor skills and cognitive functioning until those cells die. Once neurons are damaged or die, they cannot be replaced by the body, so neurodegenerative diseases progressively get worse and worse. Some common examples of neurodegenerative disease include Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Both Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease are among the most common and prevalent neurodegenerative diseases. Stats Can estimates that there is roughly 1% of Canadians 45 years of age or older that are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease (approximately 50,000 people).

Neurodegenerative diseases are incurable, but there are a variety of treatment options and therapies available which can help improve the quality of life of those individuals suffering from such disorders.

Such therapies can include: diet and lifestyle changes, oculomotor and balance therapy, pons stimulation and more. Contact us today to learn more about our available treatment options for neurodegenerative diseases.

Neurodegenerative diseases cause neurons in the brain to gradually lose function and eventually die. The death of brain cells from neurodegenerative diseases can lead to devastating effects and result in drastically impaired movement (ataxias), memory (dementias), speech, intelligence and more.