New research on dementia


Dementia is a condition that gets more severe over time and is often characterized by a decline in memory, language and judgement, physical changes and changes in mood and behaviour. Each person experiences dementia differently. People living with dementia may still be able to remain active and engaged in work, home life and other responsibilities. Uninformed attitudes and beliefs about dementia can result in stigma.

Being respectful, listening actively and speaking with care are good ways to overcome the challenges of stigma. To help people living with dementia, you can also: a)make efforts to include them in conversations and/or activities; b)encourage them to share their experiences; and c)refuse to accept actions and language that are belittling, dehumanizing, discriminatory and patronizing

However is never too early or too late to take action that can benefit your brain health. Changes in the brain that may lead to dementia can begin decades before signs or symptoms appear.

Most cases of dementia aren’t related to genetics or inherited. A healthy lifestyle can lower the chance of developing dementia, including: being physically active (physical inactivity can increase the risk of dementia by 40%); limiting alcohol consumption; eating a healthy, balanced diet — too much sodium (salt) in highly processed foods can lead to high blood pressure, increasing the risk of dementia by 60% — managing depression, if you have it; reducing your exposure to air pollution; paying attention to the quality of your sleep; quitting smoking and avoiding second-hand smoke.

Maganga Lumbu, Health Canada (Québec)