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Tips for Reducing Your Risk of Dementia

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Tips for Reducing Your Risk of Dementia

Protecting Your Cognitive Health

As we grow older, it is important to be proactive in preventing disease and protecting our health. One of the most important things to be mindful of is your cognitive health — including dementia and other age-related conditions.

Keep reading to learn what dementia actually is as well as tips for reducing your risks.

What is Dementia?

Dementia is an umbrella term used to describe a decline in cognitive function that interferes with daily life. It affects memory, thinking, language, judgment, and behavior. Though it is common and risks increase with age, dementia is not a normal part of aging. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 1 in 10 people over the age of 65 have dementia.

The following are additional risk factors for dementia:

  • Family history of dementia.
  • Increasing age.
  • Poor physical health and obesity.
  • Hypertension.
  • Diabetes.
  • Depression.
  • Smoking cigarettes.

Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia, accounting for 60 to 80 percent of cases. Other types of dementia include Lewy body dementia, frontotemporal dementia, and vascular dementia.

Prevention Tips

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to preventing dementia, as the causes are not fully understood.

However, there are some lifestyle changes that can help reduce your risk, including staying physically active and maintaining a healthy diet. Other prevention tips include:

  • Quitting smoking.
  • Avoiding excessive alcohol intake.
  • Managing your stress levels.
  • Engaging in mentally stimulating activities like puzzles or learning new skills.
  • Get enough sleep every night and avoid sleep deprivation.
  • Connecting with others socially to reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation
  • Practicing brain-healthy habits like making sure you get plenty of omega-3 fatty acids in your diet
  • Taking steps to protect yourself from head injuries by wearing helmets when riding a bike or playing sports.
  • Avoiding activities that could increase your risk of brain injuries.

By memorizing these prevention tips, you can help care for your aging loved one. For information on health plans from ATRIO Health Plans, please contact us at (877) 672-8620.