Dementia refers to numerous conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia, and more.
Nobody knows exactly what causes dementia, but all types exhibit damage to—or loss of—nerve cells in the brain. This characteristic means that dementia is not reversible, which explains why it is so important to reduce the risk factors associated with its onset.
Preventing Dementia: What You Need to Know
Dementia is a degenerative brain disease, so, naturally, one of the best ways to keep it at bay is to keep your brain healthy. The simplest way to do this is to eat well, watch your weight, exercise regularly, and avoid alcohol and tobacco. Attending to these important details is not a fail-safe, however.
Age, genetics, and level of education are also risk factors. What’s more, recent research shows that loneliness, hearing loss, and untreated depression may increase the likelihood of dementia. New data collected by UK Biobank, for instance, indicate that depression may elevate the risk of dementia by over 50% and that chronic sufferers are in the greatest danger.
According to lead researcher Wei Cheng, Ph.D., “this indicates that timely treatment of depression is needed among those with late-life depression,” and that “providing depression treatment for those with late-life depression might not only remit affective symptoms but also postpone the onset of dementia.”
Dementia and Depression
Suffering from depression puts you at risk of developing dementia, and dementia, in turn, can make depression worse. The two are intertwined, and the only way out is to break the cycle. There is no cure for dementia, but depression can at least be treated.
Traditional treatment for depression involves some combination of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and medication. This works for some, but many others find no relief. Those in the latter category are at the highest risk for developing dementia and other complications. Luckily, innovative approaches to treating depression are under constant development, and many show great promise.
Ketamine infusion therapy is one new treatment for depression that has gained enormous momentum in recent years. Numerous studies see patients experience immediate and lasting relief from depression—oftentimes after just a single infusion—and many more experience full remission after the initial treatment cycle.
If you or a loved one suffers from depression, you need to seek help. Dementia is a tragic disease that impacts not only the individual, but the entire family. What’s more, it is not the only life-threatening complication associated with deteriorating mental health.
Contact Vitalitas Denver
To learn more about why and how to treat depression, do not hesitate to contact Vitalitas Denver—a ketamine clinic staffed by a qualified and experienced suite of dedicated medical professionals.