An exciting piece of technology known as a “fitness tracker for brain health” may one day make it feasible to determine an individual’s likelihood of acquiring Alzheimer’s disease as early as possible. Electroencephalography (EEG) is included in the one-of-a-kind headband that was developed by a group of researchers from the University of Colorado, the Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Miami. Its purpose is to monitor brain wave patterns for possible early indicators of dementia long before the illness begins to manifest itself in human behavior.
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The study team found alterations in neural patterns while sleeping that might be connected to the accumulation of amyloid and tau proteins that are prevalent in the brains of those with Alzheimer’s disease. It will definitely take some time before high-tech headbands become accessible for purchase or even testing in clinical settings. This is partly due to the fact that the root cause of Alzheimer’s disease is not yet fully understood, which makes it difficult to determine which factors may play a role in its development. Still, the hope is better built than ever.
Demonstrating how we can assess digital biomarkers for early indications of disease using accessible and scalable headband devices in a home setting is a huge advancement in catching and mitigating Alzheimer’s disease at the earliest stages, explains Brice McConnell, a clinical neurologist at the University of Colorado.
The headbands were utilized by the researchers to identify brain events such as sleep spindles, theta bursts, and gradual waves in trials involving 205 elderly people. What was discovered is really fascinating, to say the least.
Researchers discovered that a correlation existed between early signs of moderate dementia and a pattern of activity in which there was a decline in the intensity of the activity. Therefore, an easy-to-wear gadget that individuals can put on in the comfort of their own homes has the potential to make a significant difference in the early identification of Alzheimer’s disease, in addition to providing researchers with a substantial amount of new information regarding the connection between the illness and sleep.
Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association is where you can find the full study insights.