Friday , December 3 2021

What it means to live without smell The devastating effect of invisible disease- Corriere.it



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Loss of sense of smell or having olfactory dysfunctions is not uncommon. Before the arrival of the new coronavirus (loss of taste and smell was one of the first symptoms of the infection) it was estimated that one in 20 people had an odor loss at some point in their life. Causes? Chronic sinusitis, damage caused by viruses (especially colds and flu), as well as head trauma (which can destroy or damage the olfactory nerve fibers), polyps, tumors. It is sometimes an early sign of diseases of the nervous system such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. The sense of smell is one of our five senses, but it is often B. series. There are glasses for treating visual impairments and hearing aids for treating hearing loss, but there is no treatment to restore smell and there is also relatively limited research. The Covid epidemic has exposed the importance of our fifth sense, often so neglected. Many have experienced, especially temporarily, the feeling of living without smells and tests. And perhaps this experience can help us become more empathetic with those who have to live with this perpetual deficiency.

Mechanism

Theanosmia du complete loss of smell. Thehyposmia partial odor loss. Most people with anosmia may taste salty, sweet, sour, and bitter substances, but it does not distinguish specific flavors. The ability to distinguish flavors depends on the smell, not on the taste receptors on the tongue. Therefore, those with anosmia often complain about having a pagewithout enjoying the censorship of taste and food. Loss of olfactory receptors as a result of aging reduces the ability to smell in the elderly. The perception of taste begins to change around the age of 60 and at the same time the sense of smell decreases (and the error of the decline in olfactory receptors). As we age, the sensitivity threshold for sweet and salty also increases. In fact, the elderly tend to use more salt and more sugar.

Interrogations

But what does it really mean to lose your sense of smell?

To understand the problems faced by people who lose their ability to smell, a team of researchers from East Anglia University in Norwich, England, studied the personal stories of 71 patients who experienced anosmia. Written accounts stand out relationship difficulties, isole, difficulty seeking help. Many have reported thisNegative and superficial attitude of doctors in the face of this situation, it is difficult to get advice or treatment.

The limits of everyday life

The inability to smell can set objective limits in daily life: patients I can’t feel a gas leak or to understand that spoiled food. Not only can the sense of smell save lives, it can also enhance the taste of food, explore the environment, and evoke a memory. Smelling the scent may remind you of a loved one, but that experience cannot be lived by someone who does not have a fifth sense. Studies in the United States and Scandinavia show that olfactory dysfunction increases the risk of death, regardless of dementia. Our research – This is explained in an article in The Conversation Carl Phipott, A professor of Erinology and Olfactology at the University of East Anglia showed the anosmia caused physical problems. Due to the lower pleasure of eating, some study participants explained that they had less appetite and consequently lost weight. Reduced perception of flavors has also led to the intake of foods with low nutritional value, especially those rich in fat, salt and sugar.

Emotional aspects

These are the negative emotional aspects that people with anosmia suffer from shame, sadness, depression, anxiety. Volunteers talked about daily concernspersonal hygiene (not knowing if they smelled bad), loss of intimacy until relationships are broken. Some in attendance reported that they did not like the reason for the celebrations. Not to mention the inability to associate smells with happy memories, he found very frustrating. Many experiences are not fully enjoyed and lived and especially asomias do not arouse empathy and are not widely understood by those who do not suffer from it. Perhaps the epidemic of coronavirus has helped to awaken the fifth sense, although unfortunately, even today, there is no specific treatment to cure persistent anosmia.

December 6, 2020 (December 6, 2020)

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