The human brain is the most sensitive, most vulnerable and most complex part of our body. It is very powerful in that it controls our psychological, emotional, physical, and social capabilities. It is called the central nervous system because all other organs rely on its well-being. Our brain is the centre of our intelligence which interprets the signals sent by our senses, controls our movements and regulates our emotions. When there is something wrong with this body organ, the physical manifestation can be easily noticed, whether through physical or behavioural symptoms. This is why it is crucial to keep our brains healthy.
Aside from many mental illnesses known to science that are mostly caused by a chemical imbalance, there are also physical problems encountered by our brain, which results in what they call neurological disorders, which can be caused by many factors that include congenital abnormalities, genetic disorders, infections or injuries such as brain, spinal or nerve injuries. Here are some of the common neurological disorders:
Common Neurological Disorders
It is one of the most common diseases characterized by a throbbing or pulsing debilitating headache on one side of the head that can last for hours or days. Aside from the headache, it is commonly accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sometimes sensitivity to light and sound. Even though the cause of migraines is not yet understood, it is believed that it has something to do with interrupting nerve signals that affect the blood vessels in the brain.
This disease is a medical emergency that requires urgent medical treatment. Strokes happen when the blood flow in the brain gets interrupted, causing the brain cells to die. The two common causes of stroke are ischemic stroke which occurs when there is a blockage in an artery, or hemorrhagic stroke, wherein a blood vessel ruptures. In some cases, transient ischemic attack (TIA) happens, which is a temporary blood flow interruption in the brain with a temporary period of symptoms.
This neurological problem stems from an uncontrolled firing of electrical signals to the brain resulting in abnormal brain activity. Seizures involve changes in the levels of consciousness, movements, feelings or behaviour. Having two or more seizures within 24 hours without any identifiable cause is called Epilepsy. The cause of a seizure is the interruption of nerve cells’ normal connection brought about by high fever, alcohol or drug withdrawal, high or low blood sugar, brain concussion or other neurological problems.
This is a collective term for various disorders concerning impaired ability to remember or make any decisions that impact the daily life of the person. The most common type of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia is caused by the damage in the brain cells, which cause the interference of communication of brain cells with one another.
This condition is characterized by an inflammation in the brain, which usually causes flu-like symptoms such as headache, sensitivity to light, stiff neck, lethargy, increased irritability, seizures, changes in alertness, confusion or hallucinations or in some cases, no signs at all. This is caused by a virus such as herpes simplex viruses, varicella-zoster virus, rubella viruses.
Ways to Keep Your Brain Healthy
While some neurological diseases are caused by congenital defects, some disorders can be avoided by living a healthy lifestyle. Here are the top tips that can help you keep your brain healthy.
- Protect your head from physical accidents, which can cause accidents to your brain. People with severe head injuries are at high risk for developing cognitive impairment.
- Have a healthy diet not only for your brain but for the benefit of your whole body. Eating healthy, especially with the right balance of fruits, vegetables, nuts and plant-based proteins, have a lower risk of having neurological problems like dementia.
- Keep a healthy blood pressure. High blood pressure is typically associated with an increased risk of developing blood clots in the arteries leading to your brain, which may block the blood flow, which can lead to a stroke.
- Keep your bad cholesterol (LDL) low. Developing dementia is associated with high levels of LDL in the body. Strokes are also attributed to having high cholesterol, which blocks the blood flow in the brain and can damage some parts of it.
- Exercising regularly is not only beneficial to your concentration, mental sharpness and enhancing memory, but it can also stimulate brain cells growth. Having regular physical exercise can decrease age-related decline.
- Avoid smoking not because it can cause lung cancer and heart disease it can also kill your brain cells. Smoking causes faster cognitive decline, a higher risk of having dementia and increases the chance of stroke.
- Drink alcoholic beverages moderately or, if you can, avoid them at all. Excessive alcohol consumption may cause the neurotransmitters in the brain to be less effective.
Supplements for Neurological Health
This supplement is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which benefits the brain’s functions and development. It has been seen to have positive effects on people with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, wherein notable improvement in brain function concerning memory problems are observed. Diet rich in fish oil can also help moderate the mood of a person preventing depression or bipolar disorder.
It is well known for its wide array of benefits to the heart, brain and lungs. Ginkgo Biloba contains powerful antioxidants that fight free radicals in the body, and it helps fight various inflammation in the body. Ginkgo biloba is commonly used in Chinese medicine and is believed to open the channels of energy in the brain, kidneys, liver, and lungs. It also possesses protective properties, and it can improve the blood flow to the brain, which can prevent strokes.
While pain, anxiety and sleep are the most common reasons why people use it, this natural compound also possesses anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-nausea properties. Aside from these potential benefits, it can also help the brain. CBD oil has neuroprotective effects and can prevent cognitive decline.
To reap its positive effects, most users take CBD orally from tinctures like 40% CBD oil and sprays to various tasty edibles and infused capsules. However, at present, there is one medicine approved by the FDA which contains CBD oil used for seizures related to Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome, which has the brand name Epidiolex.
These vitamins are commonly linked with brain health which creates an impact on its function. These vitamins are necessary building blocks of the body due to the fact that it benefits the body’s energy levels and cell metabolism. Vitamin- B12 specifically helps the brain by preventing memory loss, and it also maintains the nerve cells and red blood cells. A deficiency of this B vitamin may result in brain atrophy and increases the risk of developing neurodegenerative diseases.