According to statistics, more than 35 million older adults are affected by dementia worldwide. The number includes more than four million seniors in the United States. Many believe dementia is a normal consequence of aging, but that belief is incorrect. Several factors determine the prospect of developing cognitive impairment.
The likelihood of developing dementia increases with age. Statistics for the elderly population in the United States estimate that nearly 14 percent of older adults over the age of 71 have dementia. The number rises sharply to 37 percent for seniors over the age of 90. In Italy, more than 13 percent of the population over the age of 80 lives with dementia, and the number rises to 31 percent for seniors aged 85 and older. Of the adults over the age of 90, more than half have dementia.
Caregivers whose senior loved ones have been diagnosed with dementia may feel overwhelmed by the increasing complexity of their daily responsibilities. Caring for a senior with dementia can be challenging for family caregivers. Luckily, there is dementia home care Clearwater families can rely on. Professional dementia caregivers help seniors with dementia stay safe and comfortable at home by preventing wandering, providing cognitive stimulation, and assisting with household chores.
In an evaluation of the cognitive health of 900 U.S. adults over the age of 90, 45 percent of the women and 28 percent of the men had dementia. The number of women developing dementia as they get older increases. However, women also tend to live longer than men, and those who achieve higher levels of education have a decreased risk of becoming cognitively impaired, compared to men.
Some people have a variant gene known as APOE. Others have a family history of Alzheimer’s. Seniors who don’t have the gene and have no family history of Alzheimer’s are only nine percent at risk for developing Alzheimer’s. On the other hand, people with the e4 allele have an increased risk of 29 percent. The risk increases for older adults who have both the gene anomaly and a family history of Alzheimer’s.
Older adults who have high cholesterol and/or high blood pressure have an increased risk of developing dementia. Elevated LDL levels contribute to plaques in the vascular system that interfere with blood flow to the brain. The plaques also damage the blood vessels, as does hypertension. If the brain cannot receive adequate blood flow and the nutrients carried in the blood, biological processes that protect the brain or remove the harmful proteins that cause neuron damage and subsequent cognitive impairment do not occur.
Seniors living with undiagnosed or untreated diabetes have increased blood sugar levels. High levels of blood glucose are known to cause inflammation, which leads to neuron and vascular damage. As such, seniors with diabetes are more likely to develop dementia.
Diabetes is one among several health conditions that can increase the risk of developing dementia. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of at-home care Clearwater, FL, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
Poor Lifestyle Choices
Overweight seniors are more likely to develop diabetes and the possible risk of having dementia. Smoking constricts blood vessels, raises the heart rate, and interferes with the blood’s ability to receive oxygen. The subsequent interference that takes place in the cardiovascular system, combined with a lack of oxygen, also raises the risk of dementia. While alcohol consumed in moderation protects the cardiovascular system, drinking in excess damages neurons and other body systems and may lead to cognitive impairment.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with dementia or another serious disease, a professional caregiver can be a wonderful addition to your caregiving team. Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Clearwater Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. Trust your loved one’s care to the professionals at Home Care Assistance. Reach out to one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (727) 330-7862.