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Is Alzheimer’s Preventable?

An estimated 6.2 million Americans currently live with Alzheimer’s disease. By 2060, that number is set to double. With such a significant portion of the country suffering from the condition, it is crucial that we answer our primary questions about the condition: What are the risk factors? The signs? Is Alzheimer’s preventable?

Alzheimer’s Awareness Month is the perfect time to educate yourself on the risk factors, symptoms, and possible prevention methods for Alzheimer’s disease. While there is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of cognitive decline.

Is Alzheimer's Preventable?

Risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease

At this point, we cannot definitively say what causes Alzheimer’s disease. However, scientists have found a correlation between certain risk factors and the disease. The primary connection? Poor health choices.

  • Cardiovascular disease. Heart health and brain health go hand-in-hand. The heart supplies blood to the brain, and if that flow is impeded at all. Chronic conditions like blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol all affect one’s brain health. According to various studies, as many as 80% of Alzheimer’s patients also suffer from some form of cardiovascular disease.
  • Depression. Depression has also been linked to cognitive decline and dementia. In fact, people who suffer from depression are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease later in life.
  • Lack of exercise. A sedentary lifestyle is not only bad for your heart, but it’s also bad for your brain. People who don’t get enough exercise are at a higher risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Smoking. Smoking has been linked to several health problems, and cognitive decline is one of them. Studies have shown that smokers are more likely to develop dementia than non-smokers.

Early signs of Alzheimer’s disease

With decades of memories to contest with, some forgetfulness is normal for seniors. However, there are certain signs to look out for when someone is developing Alzheimer’s disease. These include:

  • Forgetting recent conversations or events.
  • Forgetting the names of places or objects
  • Regularly struggling to find the right word
  • Asking questions repetitively
  • Misplacing items regularly
  • Poor judgment of important or dangerous situations
  • Struggling to make decisions
  • Mood changes

Alzheimer’s prevention tips

Just like we can’t say how Alzheimer’s disease comes to be, we don’t know for sure what prevents Alzheimer’s. What we can say, however, is that there are lifestyle choices you can make to reduce your risk of cognitive decline.

  • Stay socially active. A recent study showed that socially active seniors have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. So, stay connected with your friends and loved ones, join social clubs, and get out as often as you can.
  • Eat a Mediterranean diet. The Mediterranean diet includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, and healthy fats like olive oil. This type of diet has been linked to better brain health and a reduced risk of cognitive decline.
  • Exercise regularly. Exercise is good for the body and the mind. As mentioned before, it increases blood flow to the brain, which is essential for its health.
  • Try to get quality sleep. While it may not be possible to get fantastic sleep every night, you should do what you can to get quality night’s sleep as often as possible. Studies show that poor sleep leads to the development of sticky proteins in the brain, which can disrupt memory formation.
  • Partake in mentally stimulating activities. Keeping your brain active and engaged will help reduce your risk of cognitive decline. Try activities like puzzles, crosswords, Sudoku, and other brain games. You can also read books, take classes, and learn new skills to keep your mind sharp.

Alzheimer’s disease is a serious concern for seniors. However, by making healthy lifestyle choices, you can reduce your risk of developing the disease. Stay socially active, eat a nutritious diet, exercise regularly, get quality sleep, and participate in mentally stimulating activities to keep your mind sharp well into your golden years.

Your at-home caregiver can help you stay mentally stimulated

Your at-home caregiver can do more for you than you may think. In addition to assisting with personal care, medication reminders, and meal planning, caregivers can also help you stay mentally active. They can help you gather whatever supplies you need for your favorite hobbies, as well as enjoy brain games and activities to keep you sharp.

For more information on our caregiver program, call us at (623) 526-6367.

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You have come to the right place if you are looking for in-home care for elderly loved ones or yourself in the Phoenix area. Our team of experts provides quality services to senior citizens in the comfort of their own homes. We understand that each individual is unique. We have a vast team of experts carefully detailing every care plan with years of experience-backed care knowledge.

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