Evergreen Retire
Assisted Living
Independent Living

Evergreen Retirement Home thoughts on Health Maintenance:

by Evergreen Retirement

Diabetes, High Blood Pressure and Sleep Apnea’s effects on Mental Health. 

Retirement Homes in Los Angeles and the increasing number of diabetic residents.

Retirement homes in Los Angeles have seen an increase in diabetes amongst their residents. We know this is very debilitating disease. When we think of diabetes, we often think of its physical manifestations and symptoms. After all, vision problems, foot problems, high blood pressure, and an increased risk of wound infection due to slow healing are a huge burden on the minds of those with diabetes and their caregivers. However, diabetes affects people in another perilous way - it affects mental health.

Think about it. High blood glucose (sugar) levels are a hallmark of diabetes. All of the brain's functions, including thinking, judgement, memory, emotions, and behavior, rely on the presence of glucose. If we have too much glucose around our body, our brain will be affected, as will our eyes, skin, feet, and the rest of the anatomical system.

Diagnosis of diabetes can sound like it is not just a threat to health. It can be seen as a threat to one's lifestyle because managing diabetes means changing your daily routine. That’s where the staff and caregivers at Evergreen Retirement Home can provide vital services by helping our residents adhere to medical advice. A doctor may recommend a change in diet by eating certain foods, avoiding sugary drinks, or abstaining from alcoholic beverages, which can be difficult for anyone regardless of the diagnosis of diabetes. Additional tasks such as monitoring blood sugar and insulin may be difficult to remember at first, doctor's appointments may result in time off work, and the cost of proper care may be high. These changes can be emotionally draining, and you may begin to realize that you feel a bit off or have less energy left to do the important tasks of managing your condition. 

Effects of High Blood Pressure on Brain Functioning

Here are a few ways in which diabetes affects mental health:

  • Depression

 People with diabetes are at greater risk of developing depression. Scientists are not sure why, but they say that it may be a combination of variable blood sugar and insulin levels to affect the brain and the psychological stressors associated with a serious chronic illness. In addition, poorly controlled diabetes can cause symptoms that mimic depression.

  • Dementia

 Research finds that people with diabetes are at greater risk of developing dementia in later life. Another theory is that high glucose levels cause stress in the brain that accumulates over many years. According to one theory, because diabetes constricts blood vessels (which explains the dangers associated with high blood pressure), the disease reduces blood flow to the brain, leading to oxygen deprivation and brain damage over time.

  • Delirium

 When diabetes is not controlled correctly, it can lead to delirium. This poorly diagnosed critical condition of severe confusion and behavioral change is difficult to treat and is associated with a higher risk of chronic mental disintegration, and even death.

Effects of High Blood Pressure on Brain Functioning

You may not think about mental illness when thinking about high blood pressure, but there is a connection. If you have hypertension, you are more likely to experience emotional problems like anxiety and depression than those with normal blood pressure.

Anxiety and high blood pressure can often be found together. High blood pressure can be caused by anxiety, and anxiety can also be caused by high blood pressure. High blood pressure can cause some people to feel anxious. People diagnosed with hypertension may worry about their mental health and future.

In some cases, symptoms of high blood pressure, including headaches, blurred vision, and shortness of breath. Combined, this may result in panic or increased anxiety.

High blood pressure, (or " Hypertension"), has been shown to damage the small blood vessels in parts of your brain involved in cognition and memory, greatly increasing the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease or dementia. Being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease can also affect you emotionally, affect your vision, and make you prone to anxiety and depression.

Stress-reducing activities can lower your blood pressure. Using strategies to manage your stress can help improve your health in other ways. There are numerous strategies for dealing with stress. For example, simplifying the busy schedule, taking deep breaths to help you relax, doing exercise, yoga and meditation and getting plenty of sleep.

Effects of Sleep Apnea on Brain Health

There are a variety of conditions that can occur due to sleep apnea and sleep disturbances. The lack of oxygen due to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can affect the whole body. While you may know some of these effects, as sleep apnea causes oxygen deprivation, brain damage is one of the most important potential risks.

The effects of snoring and sleep apnea can be dangerous. Since breathing is stopped and oxygen is restricted to the brain, this can decrease brain function and damage brain cells. Symptoms of this damage include memory problems, difficulty in concentration, and mood swings.

A study has revealed that sleep apnea affects two brain chemicals. These are gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter that promotes calmness, and Glutamate, which plays a key role in memory and learning. Patients with sleep apnea have experienced a decrease in GABA, forcing the brain to reorganize its poor function. They also see an increase in Glutamate, which causes damage to the neurons and nerves.

As well as altering brain function, sleep apnea can change the brain's physical shape. Gray matter is where most of the information processing takes place in the brain, and the white matter allows different messages to pass through the gray matter. This brain damage due to sleep apnea can alter the brain's structure and its fibre pathways.

This effect on the brain issue has been confirmed in recent neuro-imaging studies, showing that the structure of many brain areas can be compromised. This also includes decreased reasoning skills, slower reaction time, and difficulty in regulating mood.

When it comes to people with sleep apnea, CPAP therapy can play a significant role in slowing down the course of brain damage.

Effects of Sleep Apnea on Brain Health

Evergreen Retirement Home can help maintain health and mental wellness!

Evergreen Retirement Home is constantly researching how to keep our residents as healthy as possible, for as long as possible. The complete wellness of our residents is our priority, and includes promoting cognitive wellbeing. Call us , or contact us here today, and let us arrange an appointment to visit for a firsthand look at what makes us exceptional when it comes to individual care.

Please Contact Us

225 Evergreen St, Burbank, CA 91505

(818) 843-8268