Are You Scared Of The D?
D stands for dementia. Perhaps you’re not frightened of this disease, but you should know that it impacts one in fourteen people over sixty-five and one in six people over eighty. After you turn sixty-five your chance of developing the disease will double every five years. Now, you might think that’s far enough away that you don’t have to worry about it. But, dementia can catch you earlier than this. Early onset dementia can start to impact you before you turn forty. The good news is that this type of issue is far rarer, but it could still impact your life at some point. You might already be scared of dementia, particularly if you have seen the impact it can have first hand. This article may help you get over your fear. But first, we need to know what makes dementia so terrifying.
Why Are You Afraid?
There are a few reasons why you might be terrified of dementia. Let’s start with the big one - you don’t know the cause, and neither do doctors. It’s true, doctors have next to no idea what causes dementia. They know it has something to do with the deterioration of grey matter, but they don’t know why this happens. And, if you don’t know why it happens, how can you prevent it? How can you avoid it? The simple answer is that you can’t, and that’s definitely the main reason that many are absolutely terrified of this condition.
You can research online and look at various studies or papers. This will provide you with a little more information about the current investigations and the latest development. But we can promise you that there have been no major breakthroughs in this area.
At this point, you might be thinking - wait, didn’t I read online that they had found a cure? Currently, there is no cure. Yes, there have been promising results with certain medications, but these have not even reached the human testing phase yet. That means if they do work, they are still between five and ten years away from the market.
That’s a problem because the medication that we just mentioned only works to prevent the disease from developing. It’s still not a cure if you already have it or if you are suffering from the condition. Ten years from now, you could already have developed this condition.
Of course, if we’re thinking about why this disease is truly terrifying it’s all to do with what it does and how it impacts you. It takes away who you are, erases your memories, your idea of self. It leaves you lost, confused and often alone because you may not recognize the people who care about you anymore. It can send you back to your childhood while leaving you trapped in a failing body. It’s a horrific fate and one that you may not be able to avoid.
Worse For Women?
You are more likely to develop dementia if you are a woman compared with a man. 65 percent of people living with dementia are women which sounds horrendous. However, one of the main reasons for this is that women have a longer life expectancy than men. It’s not that a women’s lifestyle necessarily makes them more at risk to develop this condition. Although, even after developing the disease, studies show women are more vulnerable. Women with dementia are less likely to receive the same standard of treatment as men. According to companies like The Dickson Firm, women are also more likely to experience neglect and abuse when they are put in care for medical conditions like dementia. That’s why it may be best to look into a live in care solution or potentially, rely on the support of families and relatives.
Is It All Bad News?
Not quite - we don’t know specifically what causes dementia. But we can make educated guesses on how to reduce the chances of developing this disease. The first is to make sure that you are treating the brain like a muscle. If you don’t exercise your muscles, then you may notice a change, and they could start to ache or deteriorate. The same is true for your brain. It’s important to engage in active cognitive tasks rather than passive ones. Passive tasks include watching TV while active might include solving a puzzle.
Speaking of exercise, studies also suggest that working out and exercising regularly may also reduce the chances of you developing dementia. Exercising keeps the cells in the body young and this includes cells in your brain.
It’s also possible that diet could be a factor. The reason researchers believe this is that the degradation of grey matter in your brain could be linked to oxygenation. Oxygenation can be reduced by consuming foods that contain antioxidants. Various natural foods contain antioxidants including blueberries and cauliflower. Experts recommend that you get a certain level of antioxidants in your diet every day to reduce issues with oxygenation.
Similarly, other factors may increase your chances of developing dementia such as heavy drinking, drugs, and poor environments. Many researchers have suggested that high levels of pollution could be the reason for the recent increases in cases of dementia. As such, you may want to consider moving away from the city and relocating to the suburbs or a rural area where levels of pollution are lower.
Finally, while we don’t seem to be on the edge of a cure for dementia right now, it’s important to realize that medicine changes, evolves and develops every day. Researchers are also optimistic that advances in machine learning could bring various medical cures and treatments forward and help those in need. This technology is rapidly evolving, and we will almost certainly see it being used to create cures for diseases and conditions like dementia in our lifetime.
We hope you see now that while dementia is frightening, once you understand the situation more it can be easier to deal with. It’s important to be able to recognize the signs of dementia such as constantly forgetting short-term memories or zoning out of conversations. If you notice the signs, see a doctor so you can get treatment. While there is no cure, there are treatment options that can greatly reduce the progress of the disease.