The health of your brain's blood vessels is closely linked to your overall heart health. Taking these steps to keep your heart healthy may also help reduce your risk of vascular dementia:
May. 02, 2014
- Maintain a healthy blood pressure. Keeping your blood pressure in the normal range may help prevent both vascular dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
- Keep your cholesterol in check. A healthy, low-fat diet and cholesterol-lowering medications if you need them may reduce your risk of vascular dementia, probably by reducing the amount of plaque deposits building up inside your brain's arteries.
- Prevent or control diabetes. Avoiding the onset of diabetes, with diet and exercise, is another possible way to decrease your risk of dementia. If you already have diabetes, controlling your glucose levels can help protect your brain blood vessels from damage.
- Quit smoking. Smoking tobacco damages blood vessels everywhere in your body.
- Get physical exercise. Regular physical activity should be a key part of everyone's wellness plan. In addition to all of its other benefits, exercise may help you avoid vascular dementia.
- Korczyn AD, et al. Vascular dementia. Journal of the Neurological Sciences. 2012;322:2.
- Mohr JP, et al. Stroke Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, and Management. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier. 2011. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Feb. 2, 2014.
- Dementia: Hope through research. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/dementias/detail_dementia.htm. Accessed Feb. 2, 2014.
- Daroff RB, et al. Bradley's Neurology in Clinical Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Feb. 2, 2014.
- Wright CB. Etiology, clinical manifestations, and diagnosis of vascular dementia. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 2, 2014.
- Goldman L, et al. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Feb. 2, 2014.
- Wright CB. Treatment and prevention of vascular dementia. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 2, 2014.
- Medications for memory loss. Alzheimer's Association. http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_standard_prescriptions.asp. Accessed Feb. 4, 2014.
- Caring for a person with Alzheimer's disease. National Institute on Aging. http://www.nia.nih.gov/alzheimers/publication/caring-person-alzheimers-disease. Accessed Feb. 4, 2014.
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