«Second Start»: Hovhannes Manvelyan

Hosted on the second episode of the «Second Start» radio show, one of Armenia’s most famous neurologists, Hovhannes Manvelyan, explains that the number of people with dementia is increasing year by year, because thanks to advanced medicine, both in the world and in Armenia, people live longer, and the aging process of the brain becomes inevitable.

«In order to effectively fight the disease, it is necessary not to wait until memory problems appear, at the first signs, when, for example, our parents are irritable, moody, sad, have difficulties with daily activities, we should consult a doctor. It is not possible to restore the dead cells of the brain, but the process must be stopped to a certain extent and the quality of life should be improved,» says the professor. «They go to the doctor so late that the grandfather doesn’t remember his name, nor the children’s, but he knows the first grade teacher Lyubov Petrovna well,» Manvelyan says, considering it essential to go to the doctor at the first symptoms in the fight against the disease. 12 percent of those with mild cognitive impairment will develop dementia within 7 years. This is the reason that in case of initial symptoms, it is necessary to immediately contact the family doctor and take measures.

A healthy lifestyle and diet, according to the neurologist, are extremely important both in terms of preventing the disease, as well as having stability and a positive change in the patient’s condition. «If an elderly member of the family has this problem, there is no need to be ashamed, nor to lock the grandmother or grandfather at home,» the doctor notes, explaining that often family members reject the problem. Dementia is a lost war, it is not possible to restore the destroyed cells, but it is possible to preserve the existing ones and give quality to life.

Turning to the issue of care, the doctor noted, that about 40 percent of caregivers die before the patient, therefore, the family caregiver should take advantage of his so-called vacation, go on vacation from time to time, or entrust the care of the patient to specialized organizations, so that it is possible to continue the process effectively in the future.