Dementia: who is at risk

More than 55 million people worldwide have dementia, and that number is increasing by 10 million every year. The doctor talks about the categories of people most susceptible to the disease, and whether it can be cured.

Doctor of Medical Sciences, Russian neurologist Viktor Shakhnovich considers hypertension and obesity to be the most dangerous factors for the onset of dementia. Experts distinguish three types of this disease, and they are not associated with age characteristics, says Lenta.ru.

The first type is vascular. At the heart of the occurrence of dementia is a violation of the integrity of the elasticity of the vascular wall, and gradually certain parts of the brain stop feeding on blood, which causes dead areas to appear. Neurologist warns:

“Often this happens due to high blood pressure, due to blood clotting, due to a violation of the lipid composition of the blood.”

The second type is dementia, which is associated with normotensive hydrocephalus (a syndrome characterized by a combination of dementia, walking disorders and urinary incontinence). The doctor explains:

“This is due to the fact that the brain begins to age, and its volume decreases. This automatically leads to an increase in the ventricles of the brain to such a size that they put pressure on the brain, which as a result ceases to perform its main function.

The third type is Alzheimer’s disease, hereditary dementia. It manifests itself at any age and is due to the fact that Alzheimer’s genes destroy certain brain structures.

What should you pay attention to? The first two types of dementia are most susceptible to:

  • obese patients;
  • suffering from diabetes;
  • hypertension;
  • people working in heavy industry, where poisoning of the body, including the brain, can occur.

At an early stage, the disease is better treated. To identify it, the doctor recommends an annual medical examination, checking blood pressure and blood vessels. If memory impairment and high blood pressure are observed, a specialist should be contacted immediately:

“At the slightest memory impairment (forgotten, for example, the name of an object, the last name of a person), you need to go to the doctor and check why this is happening. The second situation – when the pressure rises, do not think: “It’s okay, I’ll go to the pharmacy, I’ll ask for a pill or to a neighbor.” The pressure is normalized, but still there is vascular insufficiency of the brain. One, two, three, four times and there are already larger changes, in which it is much more difficult to help a person.

Scientists at the University of South Australia have identified a causal relationship between vitamin D deficiency and dementia. The results of a large-scale study are published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Scientists analyzed data from 294,514 participants in the long-term UK Biobank study to determine the link between low vitamin D levels and risk of dementia and stroke.

Genetic analysis has shown that up to 17% of dementia cases could be prevented by increasing vitamin D levels to normal levels. Deficiency has been associated with an increased risk of dementia and stroke, with the strongest association seen in people with the lowest levels of vitamin D (less than 25 nmol/L). The risk in this case increased by 54% compared with patients who had normal levels of the vitamin.

Dementia is a chronic or progressive syndrome that leads to deterioration in cognitive function. Its popular name is senile insanity or senile dementia. Most often, the disease occurs against the background of aging of the body and its accompanying changes. Usually, dementia develops after the age of 65, but against the background of certain diseases, intoxication or injuries, it can also appear at an earlier age.

Damage to the central nervous system is irreversible, the right treatment can only stop the process, but not reverse it. About 487,500 Australians live with dementia, and this is the second leading cause of death in the country. Worldwide, more than 55 million people suffer from dementia, and 10 million new cases are diagnosed each year.



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