A new study has concluded that one (1) in three (3) Brits born in 2015 are set to develop dementia later in life. Researchers stress the need to develop new, more efficient treatments
Many field experts are worried that the United Kingdom is already facing its biggest dementia crisis since field experts estimate that 850.000 individuals are already living with the condition.
Dementia is a tough condition that affects not only the patients, but also their loved ones, as siblings, spouses, children and grandchildren have to watch their family members forget who they are.
Some of the early symptoms that people developing the condition may exhibit include finding it difficult to remember things and having trouble concentrating, whereas some of the common symptoms in the later stages include affecting the patient’s ability to walk, swallow, and perform other basic physical functions.
Dr. Matthew Norton, head of policy from Alzheimer’s Research UK, offered a statement underlining the implications of the new findings. He explained that “These figures underline a stark reality: as people are living longer, more and more people will develop dementia if action is not taken now to tackle the condition”.
He also commented on the fact that “each generation is living longer than the last”, saying that it’s a really wonderful thing. However, he stressed the importance of making sure than older individuals are healthy enough to actually enjoy the bonus years that they have.
Dr. Norton and his team base their analysis on the life expectancy projections made by the Office for National Statistics, and came to the conclusion that 37 percent (37%) of all girls born in 2015 are set to develop dementia in their later years, and that 27 percent (27%) of all the boys born in 2015 are set to develop dementia in their later years.
The first risk factor that field experts associate with dementia is old age, followed by insufficient blood supply to the brain. This is because the blood vessels of people with dementia have a tendency to either harden or narrow.
The researchers noted in their study that the predictions they made are based on the present number of individuals diagnosed with dementia who are at least 60 years old. This means that the actual number of girls and boys born in 2015 who are set to develop dementia might turn out to be higher than predicted.
The main cause of this is that the number of cases of dementia also increases from generation to generation.
There’s no known cure for dementia, however several field experts are presently trying to develop or find a drug capable of targeting the proteins researchers associate with Alzheimer’s disease.
The goal is to at least delay the onset of the disease, if curing it will prove to be impossible. The researchers from Alzheimer’s Research UK inform that a treatment that slows down the onset of dementia would reduce the number of patients by a third.
The new research has been well received by the medical community. Mark Dallas, Alzheimer’s expert with the University of Reading, had a lot of praise for the study and how it highlighted the number of lives affected by dementia. However, he also said that progress may come later rather than sooner as there are five (5) researchers looking into cancer for every one (1) researcher looking into dementia.
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