Can a Head Injury Cause a Rise in Dementia Risk?

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Even though age is the biggest risk factor for dementia, some researchers believe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) play a role as well. A few long-term studies have revealed that brain injuries, including concussions that take place during childhood, can increase the risk of dementia. If you’re caring for an aging loved one, spend some time researching dementia and all of its risk factors. There currently isn’t a cure for dementia, but seniors can do quite a bit to reduce their risk of developing it.

A Closer Look at Dementia

Dementia is a medical term used to describe a group of cognitive symptoms. Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, and it can cause memory loss, confusion, and sudden changes in personality. Scientists still have a lot to learn about these neurodegenerative disorders, but most researchers agree dementia is the result of plaques of protein forming in the brain. Over time, those plaques can kill off millions of brain cells, and cognitive abilities are going to be impacted if the body can’t replace the cells.

Recent Studies on TBIs and Dementia

A recent study published in The Lancet Psychiatry revealed brain injuries increase the risk of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. That particular study followed just over 2.7 million adults for nearly 15 years, and those who had been diagnosed with TBIs were much more likely to develop dementia later in life. More research needs to be done on this subject, but some doctors believe any inflammation of the brain could trigger the production of specific proteins that kill off brain cells.

Seniors with head injuries often need assistance with everyday activities while they recover. 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 elder care Oakville, ON, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

Other Risk Factors to Consider

Over the last few decades, researchers have been able to identify some of the biggest risk factors for dementia. Age is the single greatest risk factor, but genetics are important as well. Familial Alzheimer’s disease (FAD), another common form of dementia, is the result of a mutated gene passed from parents to their children. Lifestyle habits can also have a major impact on mental health, which is why seniors must try to remain as healthy as possible.

Seniors with dementia, no matter what the cause, can optimize their quality of life with the help of a highly trained, experienced professional caregiver. If your senior loved one needs professional dementia care, Oakville caregivers are available around the clock to provide the high-quality care he or she needs. Using the revolutionary Cognitive Therapeutics Method, dementia caregivers can help your loved one stay mentally engaged and delay the progression of the disease.

Reducing the Risk of Dementia

Some risk factors for dementia are unavoidable, but older adults can do quite a bit to preserve their cognitive health. Sticking to a nutritious diet and exercising a few times a week can drastically reduce the risk of dementia and many other health conditions. Seniors who want to boost their brain health and reduce their risk of sudden cognitive decline can also engage in difficult mental tasks, such as learning new languages, doing puzzles, playing board games, and reading books. Taking measures to prevent falls that could lead to TBIs is also a good idea.

If your loved one has experienced a head injury or is living with dementia, having a trained professional caregiver close by can provide you and your family with much-needed peace of mind. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of elderly home care. Oakville families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. If your loved one needs assistance with the challenges of aging, reach out to one of our knowledgeable, compassionate Care Managers today at (905) 337-1200.


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