There have been recent discoveries about ways that people can prevent or slow the development of dementia. These exciting discoveries could change the way that the world handles the common condition.
1. Loneliness Is a Risk Factor
Loneliness and social isolation are two factors that increase a person’s risk of developing dementia as they age. Seniors who are experiencing loneliness are at the greatest risk for this. The emotional condition puts stress on the brain, which can then damage its ability to recall memories.
Cognitive abilities also decline when the brain receives no stimulation, whether it’s through social interactions or mental challenges. An inactive mind will struggle more than an active one.
What can seniors do to combat loneliness and isolation? They could move into a senior community. Senior living communities can provide consistent opportunities for social interactions and mental exercise. Even small changes, like joining creative workshops and exercise classes with like-minded peers, could make a difference with their mood—and in turn, their cognition.
What if they already have a dementia diagnosis? If that’s the case, there are many senior housing options that offer memory care services for seniors living with dementia and other forms of cognitive decline. Professional caregivers will make sure that these residents get the specialized attention and support that they need.
2. Video Games Improve Memory
Over the years, research has proven that video games can improve children’s problem-solving skills, hand-eye coordination, and memory. Recently, researchers have found that these cognitive improvements don’t just happen when children play. A study found that playing video games regularly helped improve seniors’ short-term memories and increased their brains’ gray matter. It seems that the hobby has impressive benefits for all age groups.
3. Regular Exercise Helps with Brain Health
Regular exercise can improve a person’s strength, endurance, flexibility, sleep quality, and mood. Researchers have recently discovered that it can also have a profound impact on one’s memory. Doing regular aerobic exercise improved study participants’ gray matter and cognitive capabilities. The conclusion of this discovery is that keeping up with a moderate exercise routine could keep a dementia diagnosis at bay.
4. Deep Sleep Can Prevent Dementia
It’s common knowledge that sleep affects the brain’s cognitive abilities. After a single night of sleep deprivation, people have reduced cognitive capabilities, including problem-solving, concentration, and short-term memory. It’s easy to see how a continued pattern of sleep deprivation or poor sleep can affect a person’s cognitive abilities for the longterm.
Recently, researchers have found that sleep and dementia are connected. They found that people who experience sleep trouble are more likely to be diagnosed with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. On the other hand, they found that deep sleep (the sleep stage where brain waves slow down) could protect against the development of these conditions.
How can someone get more deep sleep? Deep sleep is a natural stage in your sleep cycle. As long as you give yourself enough uninterrupted hours (7 to 9 hours) to rest, you should reach it. Exercising regularly and avoiding alcohol and caffeine in the evenings will also help.
There’s no telling what the future holds, but these discoveries about dementia are incredibly promising. With this knowledge, seniors could have a better chance of coping with dementia symptoms — and even avoiding a diagnosis altogether.
About All Seniors Care Living Centres
All Seniors Care Living Centres have quickly grown to the most innovative seniors housing company in Canada. With our experience in the delivery of care, programming, services, and state-of-the-art design, All Seniors Care has demonstrated why we are the new benchmark of senior living.
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