Facts You Need To Know About Dementia

Dementia affects millions each year but it shouldn't be feared because there are things one can do to prevent or slow down the disease.

Millions each year are affected by dementia; either they become victims to the illness or try to help another who suffers from it. Dementia alters the lives of many at any age but usually strikes older adults. Dementia is not just one disease but includes many diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, alcohol-induced dementia, vascular dementia and many others; however, Alzheimer’s is known as the most common type of dementia.

Those who come down with dementia have problems remembering and going through daily activities such as making grocery lists, writing out checks, preparing meals or forgetting how to travel to places they’ve been to for years. In addition, personality changes and mood swings are also a part of dementia. But, there are many other symptoms of dementia and they depend on the individual, the life that he or she has led, genetics and overall physical and mental health.

Dementia is not a normal part of aging but is a progressive and debilitating disorder and is a disease that progresses and worsens over time. It is a disease that often begins later in life and continues until the person dies. Those who have this disease eventually are unable to care for themselves or even recognize friends or loved ones, because the disease ultimately leads to permanent damage of the brain, taking away any and all memory functions of the brain.

Research has shown that women appear to be more vulnerable to dementia than men. It is not known why this is true. Some think that low estrogen, which comes to women once they have past menopause, may be a factor that leads to the disease. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) that is currently being used and has been used by some women for years may make those women more susceptible to dementia. This is an interesting but unsettling factor, but an area that needs more research and ultimately, answers to this much needed topic. (This is not a conclusive fact, but certainly an area that needs more research and analysis.)

On the other hand, it seems that men are more susceptible to vascular dementia, due in part because they often have higher blood pressures than women and as a result suffer more from depression, diabetes, and irregular heart rhythms.

The good news in preventing and slowing down dementia is eating more nutritious foods such as fresh fruit and vegetables. Vitamins and antioxidants in these foods seem to protect the brain and may help to slow down or prevent dementia. Fish and fish oils seem to do great good is slowing down the progress or preventing, dementia. Scientific studies continue to evaluate this area but so far, the results look good.

In addition, just recently caffeine has shown to give protective help from dementia and vitamin A also seems to do good when protecting the brain.

So, dementia need not to be feared but is an area where we all need to be proactive, especially by eating more nutritious foods, finding out if you’re susceptible or prone to dementia, routine exercising and keeping the brain healthy by being more mentally active in such areas as working crossword puzzles, chess, and attending regular social activities with friends and family.

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lucia anna
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