Dementia is the second leading cause of death of Australians, and the number of Australians with dementia is rising every day. In order to prevent dementia, it’s important to understand its causes and risk factors.
Most Common Causes of Dementia
According to Healthdirect Australia, there are more than 100 different diseases that can cause dementia, but Alzheimer’s disease is the most common: 70% of people with dementia have it.
Alzheimer’s disease affects brain cells and neurotransmitters, which are body chemicals that keep our brains functioning. Consequently, the disease causes memory loss, confusion, and behaviour changes—all of which are typical symptoms of dementia.
Blood circulation problems are another leading cause of dementia. Multiple small strokes, high blood pressure, and thickened arteries contribute to poor blood flow to the brain and, as a result, vascular dementia.
Dementia and Genetics
When a loved one is diagnosed with dementia, family members may wonder whether the disease is hereditary.
There is a link between dementia and genetics because all of us inherited a combination of genes from our parents that might increase or decrease the risk of developing dementia. However, scientists believe that these genes play a decisive role in very few cases.
Risk Factors for Dementia
First and foremost, we can’t stress this enough: Dementia is preventable.
The best way to prevent dementia is by keeping your brain healthy as you age. Good nutrition habits, physical activity, and social engagement are excellent ways to stimulate your brain and lower the risk of dementia.
Additional dementia risks include:
- Age: Your chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease double every five years after you reach 65 years of age.
- Severe head injury
- Smoking increases the risk of vascular problems, like strokes.
- Diabetes is often associated with high blood pressure and blood circulation problems.
Always maintain a healthy lifestyle and see a doctor for regular checkups to decrease your chances of dementia.
We hope these tips help you understand the most common causes and risk factors for dementia. If you want to learn more about our dementia home care services, contact us through our website or by calling us at 1300 792 691.