Can I Prevent Dementia?

As you age, you may have concerns about the increase gamble of dementia. You may have questions, excessively. Are there steps I can take to prevent it ? Is there anything I can do to reduce my risk ? There are presently no approaches that have been proven to efficaciously treat or prevent Alzheimer ’ second disease and refer dementia. however, as with many other diseases, there may be steps you can take to help reduce your risk .

What Are Risk Factors?

A hazard gene is something that may increase the opportunity of developing a disease. Some risk factors can be controlled while others can not. For exercise, a person is not able to control their age, which is the greatest known risk divisor for Alzheimer ’ s and relate dementia. Another irrepressible risk factor is a person ’ s genes. Genes are structures in our body ’ mho cells that are passed down from a person ’ south give birth parents. Changes in genes — even small changes — can cause diseases .
race and gender are besides factors that influence hazard. inquiry shows that african Americans, American Indians, and Alaska Natives have the highest rates of dementia, and that risk factors may differ for women and men. Researchers are investigating what ’ s behind these differences .
however, people do have command over their demeanor and life style, which can influence their risk for sealed diseases. For model, gamey blood pressure is a major risk factor for center disease. Lowering blood coerce with life style changes or medicine can help reduce a person ’ second risk for kernel disease and heart attack.

To determine which risk factors may prevent a disease or condition, researchers first conduct experimental studies to make associations. They then conduct carefully controlled clinical trials. For example, researchers identified an association between high blood pressure and affection attacks and then completed clinical trials to determine that lowering a person ’ s rake imperativeness would indeed lower the likelihood of having a heart attack. This is not to say that people who lower their blood pressure decidedly won ’ t have a affection attack. But it importantly lowers the chances .
For Alzheimer ’ s and relate dementia, no behavior or life style factors have risen to the level of researchers being able to say : This will decidedly prevent these diseases. But there are promising avenues .

Making Healthy Lifestyle Choices May Reduce Your Risk of Dementia

Making Healthy Lifestyle Choices May Reduce Your Risk of Dementia infographic. Click through for transcript and pdf.
Read and contribution this infographic about goodly life style activities that may help reduce your risk of dementia .

What Do We Know About Reducing Risk for Dementia?

The number of older Americans is rising, so the number of people with dementia is predicted to increase. however, some studies have shown that incidence rates of dementia — meaning new cases in a population over a certain period of time — have decreased in some locations, including in the United States. Based on experimental studies, factors such as healthy life style behaviors and higher levels of education may be contributing to such a decline. But the cause and effect is uncertain, and such factors need to be tested in a clinical trial to prove whether they can prevent dementia .
A review of published research evaluated the attest from clinical trials on demeanor and life style changes to prevent or delay Alzheimer ’ s or age-related cognitive descent. The review found “ encourage but inconclusive ” attest for three types of behavioral changes ( called interventions ) : physical activity, lineage press control, and cognitive trail. The findings mean that interventions in these areas are promising enough that researchers should keep studying them to learn more. Researchers continue to explore these and other interventions to determine whether — and in what amounts or forms — they might prevent dementia .
Watch a video recording below that highlights conclusions and recommendations from the research review .

What Can You Do?

Although there is no effective treatment or prove prevention for Alzheimer ’ south and relate dementia, in general, leading a healthy life style may help address hazard factors that have been associated with these diseases .

  • Control high blood pressure. High blood pressure, or hypertension, has harmful effects on the heart, blood vessels, and brain, and increases the risk of stroke and vascular dementia. Treating high blood pressure with medication and healthy lifestyle changes, such as exercising and quitting smoking, may help reduce the risk of dementia.
  • Manage blood sugar. Higher than normal levels of blood sugar, or glucose, can lead to diabetes and may increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, cognitive impairment, and dementia. Making healthy food choices, getting regular exercise, stopping smoking, and checking glucose levels can help manage blood sugar.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese increases the risk for related health problems such as diabetes and heart disease. Being active and choosing healthy foods can help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Eat a healthy diet. Aim for a mix of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats and seafood, unsaturated fats such as olive oil, low-fat or nonfat dairy products, and limit other fats and sugars.
  • Keep physically active. Physical activity has many health benefits, such as helping to prevent being overweight and having obesity, heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure. Aim to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week. 
  • Stay mentally active. Lots of activities can help keep your mind active, including reading, playing board games, crafting or taking up a new hobby, learning a new skill, working or volunteering, and socializing.
  • Stay connected with family and friends. Connecting with people and engaging in social activities can prevent social isolation and loneliness, which are linked to higher risks for cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Treat hearing problems. Hearing loss may affect cognition and dementia risk in older adults and can make it more difficult to interact with others. Protect your ears from loud sounds to help prevent hearing loss and use hearing aids if needed.
  • Take care of your mental and physical health. This includes getting your recommended health screenings, managing chronic health issues such as depression or high cholesterol, and regularly checking in with your health care provider.
  • Sleep well. Sleeping well is important for both your mind and body. Try to get seven to eight hours of sleep each night. Talk with your doctor if you are not getting enough sleep, sleeping poorly, or think you may have a sleep disorder.
  • Prevent head injury. Take steps to prevent falls and head injury, such as fall-proofing your home and wearing shoes with nonskid soles that fully support your feet. Consider participating in fall prevention programs online or in your area. Also, wear seatbelts and helmets to help protect you from concussions and other brain injuries.
  • Drink less alcohol. Drinking too much alcohol can lead to falls and worsen health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, memory loss, and mood disorders. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health, recommends that men should not have more than two drinks a day and women only one. Learn more at NIAAA’s Rethinking Drinking website.
  • Stop tobacco use. At any age, stopping smoking can improve your health and lower the risk of heart attack, stroke, and lung disease.

Researchers can not say for certain whether making the above life style changes will protect against dementia, but these changes are dear for your health and are all depart of making healthy choices as you age .

Watch Out for False Alzheimer’s Cures

Although you might see commercials or on-line advertisements for products promising to improve brain health and prevent dementia, be timid about such products. There presently is no product that will effectively prevent or treat Alzheimer ’ s or associate dementia. Check with your sophisticate before trying any modern medicine or supplement .

What’s Next With Dementia Prevention Research?

More inquiry is needed to find ways to help prevent Alzheimer ’ second and relate dementia. Future inquiry may determine that specific interventions are needed to prevent or delay the disease in some people, but others may need a combination of treatments based on their individual hazard factors. Understanding risk factors and choices you can make immediately is important for both your give and future health. In summation to this web site, consider the resources listed below to learn more .
You can besides help researchers learn more about preventing dementia by participating in clinical trials and studies. Search the Clinical Trials Finder to find studies that need volunteers .

Researchers studying Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias

The federal government and others are exploring diverse research areas to improve quality of life for people with dementia and to prevent and treat these diseases.

Learn more about research activities.

Find More Resources on Dementia Risk and Brain Health

Explore the resources on this web site and linked below to find more information from federal government agencies .

National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Institutes of Health

Assessing Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease
Learn about genetic and early risk factors for early- and late-onset Alzheimer ’ randomness disease .

National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Institutes of Health

Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease: What Do We Know?
Learn more about the state of Alzheimer ’ s prevention research, research targets, and what you can do .

National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Institutes of Health

Reducing Your Risk of Dementia
View, download, or order a free publication about steps you can take to lead a goodly life style that may help lower your risk of dementia .

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Healthy Brain Initiative
Find information on steps to promote brain health, address cognitive impairment, and address the needs of caregivers.

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), National Institutes of Health

Mind Your Risks
Know the risks of eminent lineage press and take steps to manage your risk .

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