Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia-related illnesses typically impact older individuals over time. A mental decline can also begin due to underlying issues. Although no surefire method exists for avoiding dementia, seeking lifestyle support and remaining healthy may lessen the risk of developing one of these cognitive diseases. Liberty Resources Home Choices provides home care services in Philadelphia and Allentown Pennsylvania. Here, we discuss steps you can take to try to avert the onset of Alzheimer’s and other dementias.
Keep Your Heart Healthy
In some instances, individuals with poor cardiovascular health face a higher risk of Alzheimer’s or vascular dementia. This is because heart problems constrict the blood vessels, which hinders the brain from receiving enough oxygen. When the brain does not have enough oxygen, it can lead to cognitive impairments. By keeping your heart healthy, you may reduce the chances that you’ll develop Alzheimer’s or dementia.
There are many ways one can maintain a healthy heart. For instance, quitting smoking is an essential first step in preventing cognitive diseases and your risk of stroke or heart attack. In addition, eating a balanced and healthy diet can maintain heart health. It’s important to implement plenty of fruits, veggies, whole grains, and other heart-healthy foods into your diet. Maintaining a healthy weight, limiting your alcohol intake, blood pressure monitoring, and regular doctor visits are other ways you can keep your heart healthy and strong.
Isolating yourself from others may not only cause depression but also Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Without adequate interaction with others, the brain lacks proper mental stimulation. Remaining social and creating relationships with others can decrease your chances of developing a cognitive disorder. It is also valuable for maintaining a higher quality of life.
There are many strategies older individuals may consider for staying social, such as joining the following social groups:
- Clubs for activities such as reading, crafting, or similar hobbies
- Group sports
- Volunteering at a food shelter or other event
Sufficient exercise can also decrease your chances of developing Alzheimer’s and similar dementias. As the heart pumps, it allows the brain to receive more oxygen and increases blood flow to the brain. In turn, it can sharpen the brain and keep it working at its best capacity. A lack of exercise may lead to heart problems, which can potentially increase your risk of developing a cognitive disease.
Although it grows increasingly more difficult for older individuals to complete traditional exercises, there are still many ways to ensure they receive an adequate amount of active time, like going for daily walks or joining an exercise group. If you are unable to complete these activities, even the smallest amount of exercise can help. Take the stairs instead of an escalator or elevator or try talking on the phone while walking or standing up.
Keeping your brain sharp is another great way to reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s. Like the rest of the body, the brain requires stimulation and exercise to stay fit. Learning new skills or deepening your knowledge will keep your brain active and potentially prevent the onset of cognitive diseases. There are many ways that individuals can strengthen their minds, including:
- Reading books
- Learning new languages
- Playing or learning instruments
- Learning new skills or hobbies
- Skills training classes
In addition, if you have mental concerns such as anxiety or depression, it may be beneficial to seek treatment for your condition. Mental struggles can change the chemical and physical makeup of the brain, which may lead to the development of Alzheimer’s or other cognitive disorders. Getting the help you need and maintaining a healthy brain are fundamental to preventing dementia.
Treat Underlying Illnesses
If left untreated, certain diseases can cause Alzheimer’s disease or other disorders to occur. One disease that can lead to the development of cognitive impairment is diabetes. If you are experiencing symptoms of diabetes, it’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible. Diabetes can affect brain function, so it’s important to keep the disease under control with the proper treatment. Other medical conditions that may trigger dementias include heart disease, blood pressure issues, and mental health disorders such as depression or anxiety.
Learn More About How to Prevent Dementia Today
Liberty Resources Home Choices is dedicated to providing families in Philadelphia and the eastern Pennsylvania area with compassionate care for seniors and people with disabilities. We understand the unique needs of individuals who cannot care for themselves, particularly those with Alzheimer’s and other dementias, and we work to drastically improve their quality of life. To learn more about how we can meet your needs, contact us today at Liberty Resources Home Choices.