London, January 18 (IANS): Men and women who are anguished in middle age may be more at risk of developing dementia in their old age, suggests a new study.
The study showed that vital exhaustion, which can be perceived as an indicator of psychological distress, is a risk factor for the future risk of dementia.
Psychological distress is potentially linked to the risk of dementia through neurological and cardiovascular mechanisms.
The findings, conducted by researchers from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, revealed that for every further symptom of vital exhaustion, the risk of dementia increased by two percent.
While participants with five to nine symptoms had a 25% greater risk of dementia than those without symptoms, those with 10 to 17 symptoms had a 40% greater risk of dementia than those who had no symptoms.
It is important to underline that the physiological response to stress, including cardiovascular changes and excessive cortisol production over a prolonged period, can also contribute to linking psychological distress to an increased risk of dementia, revealed the study published in the Journal of Alzheimer & # 39; s Disease.
"Stress can have serious and harmful consequences not only for the health of our brain, but for our health in general. Cardiovascular risk factors are well-known modifiable risk factors for dementia, and in some countries a stagnation or even a decreasing incidence of dementia observed, "said Sabrina Islamoska, postdoctoral student of the faculty.
For the study, the team included 6,807 Danish participants on an average of 60 years.
Psychological distress is an important risk factor that should receive more attention when considering prevention initiatives in relation to subsequent dementia, the team said.