August 17, 2018

3 surprising things that increase your dementia risk

“As many as five million Americans age 65 and older may have Alzheimer’s Disease, and that number is expected to double for every five-year interval beyond age 65.” — the National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke.

While Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, it is not the only form.

Risk factors for all kinds of dementia include, age, alcohol use, smoking, atherosclerosis, diabetes, hypertension, and genetics. However, researchers have found some startling connections that show other surprising factors that can heighten your risk:

Risk Factor #1: Anticholinergic Drugs

A recent study published in JAMA Neurology found that a class of drugs called anticholinergics is associated with poorer cognition and changes in brain structure and function. Which drugs are we talking about here? Some you would never suspect: over-the-counter sleep aids, sedating allergy meds such as Benadryl, sedating pain meds like Tylenol PM, and prescription meds such as some antidepressants and urinary incontinence treatments. You can find the complete listhere.

 

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