Alzheimer’s disease is a complex condition that hasn’t been linked to a single cause. Instead, researchers have found there are a wide range of risk factors that can increase a senior’s chance of developing Alzheimer’s. Many of these factors are linked to stressful events that cause excess inflammation in the brain. Here are some of the many life events that can heighten the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
1. Death of a Loved One
It’s no surprise that the death of a parent, child, spouse, or other loved one is one of the most stressful life events a person can encounter. Those who face this problem are far more likely to develop Alzheimer’s, regardless of when the loss occurs. Someone who lost a parent as a young child might have the same risk as an elderly person who loses his or her spouse.
2. Playing Contact Sports
For some, sports can be a valuable form of stress relief, but for others, they can be a high-pressure activity that harms mental health. An added danger of sports like soccer and football is that they frequently involve blows to the head. Over time, this damage can add up to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
3. Substance Abuse
Those who have a dependency on alcohol or other drugs are put under a lot of stress. Certain types of substance use further increase Alzheimer’s risk by directly damaging the brain. In fact, chronic alcoholism is so bad for the brain that it can cause memory loss even before a senior is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care Carmichael, CA, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
4. Chronic Health Problems
Many people cite poor health as a major cause of stress in life. There are certain types of health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, that can also cause Alzheimer’s risks to rise even more. Mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety, can have just as big an impact on Alzheimer’s risk as physical health issues.
There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional home care. You can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep your loved one safe and comfortable while aging in place.
5. Mental or Physical Trauma
The trauma that lingers after a violent attack, abusive relationship, or other traumatic event can cause stress that continues to harm people throughout life. Over time, this can increase Alzheimer’s disease risks.
6. Financial Problems
Not being able to afford all the necessities of life can put a lot of stress on a person. In addition to raising stress levels, financial issues can also increase Alzheimer’s risk because they can make it difficult for seniors to care for themselves and live in healthy environments.
7. Difficulty Sleeping
Getting a poor night’s sleep does more than just cause stress. Sleep is one of the key times when the brain clears away waste products like the amyloid proteins that cause Alzheimer’s. Seniors who have difficulty sleeping regularly may increase their Alzheimer’s risk.
Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Carmichael, CA, live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place. If your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (916) 485-4663.