According to recent research, more than one-third of the risk factors for dementia are preventable. The data show that a few lifestyle changes now could dramatically reduce the risk of dementia later in life.

The researchers, who presented their findings at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in London, found nine preventable dementia risk factors. They recommended the following actions:

  • Seek treatment for mid-life hearing loss
  • Complete secondary education
  • Quit smoking
  • Seek early treatment for depression
  • Be physically active
  • Be social and avoid isolation
  • Manage high blood pressure
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Manage type 2 diabetes

Those who take steps on the above nine risk factors can reduce the likelihood of dementia by up to 35 percent, the researchers said.

Of course, dementia isn’t 100-percent preventable. That’s why Christian Health Care Center is committed to doing all we can to maintain the brain health of people in Whatcom County and to treat those dealing with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

We provide access to all levels of memory care and wellness, from a specially designed program for those in the beginning stages of memory loss to a fully featured, 24/7 unit for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients who have a history of wandering.

The memory care and wellness program takes place next door at Northwest Adult Day Health, where specially trained staff provide enriching activities and general supervision for NWADH members who can follow basic direction. Results for those in the early stages of memory loss can include improved strength, balance and stamina through walk and balance exercises, and memory and emotional well-being stimulation through cognitively challenging activities.

Northwest Adult Day Health cares deeply about the mental health of caregivers, too; a special Caring for a Parent with Memory Loss support group, sponsored by the Alzheimer Society of Washington, meets on the second Wednesday of every month at First Congregational Church of Bellingham.

The long-term dementia-care unit here at CHCC, called Cedar Cove, is a uniquely designed wing that offers familiar, home-style comforts for those with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Semi-private rooms are personalized with the patient’s favorite things, and we provide open spaces for socializing and exploring alongside quieter places for resting.

At Cedar Cove, nursing staff use proven dementia care concepts to create a loving and enriching environment for residents.

Christian Health Care Center is committed to making life as good as possible, both for those with dementia and for their caregivers. For more information or to learn about admission, contact our social services department.