Depression - the life sucking mental trap - can hamper your day to day life to a great extent. It may even become so severe that one does not want to simply live anymore and attempts to commit suicide. However, a vast number of research and studies also suggest that depression, be it early life or late life, increases the risk of developing dementia significantly.
A Review of the Studies
A research, after thoroughly examining 23 independent studies, has concluded that depression significantly increases the chances of developing dementia. This research found out the link between depression to all types of dementia. However, the risk was more prominently higher in case of Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia.
Another study concentrating on and following up 1764 participants for eight years for depressive tendencies and the possible dementia development have found out that there are surprising amount of evidence and correlation between late-life depression and dementia.
Yet another research conducted a comprehensive review of 16 studies focused on late life depression and five studies on early life depression and have found out that both the groups had two to four times more likelihood of developing dementia than those without depression.
What’s the Link?
To frankly tell the truth the experts do not have any definite answer to this link of depression to dementia. However, what they can confer is that as depression is connected with brain changes so it makes it more likely to cause the damage in the brain cells seen in case of dementia.
What Can We Do?
Now, this is the most practical part as far as our and our loved ones’ well-being is concerned. What can we do to stave away the depressive tendencies seen in us or our loved ones?
First of all, we have to acknowledge the fact that medication really works in case of curbing depression, anxiety and other such mental illnesses. Besides, there are very effective therapies that are proven to get people out of the depressive mental closet. So, whenever you see depressive tendencies in yourself and in your loved ones contact a psychiatrist as soon as possible.
Apart from medication and therapies, there are some other environmental and lifestyle changes that you can make in order to deal with the depressive tendencies.
Lead an active life and encourage your loved ones to do the same. Do regular physical exercises, engage in social and communal activities, do some volunteering for a worthy cause and get yourself involved in artistic or creative activities.
Practice meditation. Meditation can help a lot in case of removing depression and taking you towards a bright and peaceful inner atmosphere.
Find things and activities that make you happy. It can be anything - wearing new and nice dresses, going to the woods, singing songs or listening to them, going to your favorite location in town or any other little thing that makes you feel better.
Another very important thing to remember is that while a person is suffering from depression he or she may not be aware of it or may not be even forthcoming to express their situation. So, it is up to us to keep an eye and discern the symptoms of depression in the people around us.
Whenever you see any such depressive symptoms in your loved ones then start talking with them with care and make them realize that it is an illness for which they are sad. It’s not normal sadness and it is very much curable with medication and other practices.