According to a survey, dementia is second only to cancer as the most dreaded illness
in the United States. Undoubtedly any sign of cognitive decline can raise fears of
incipient dementia and become a source of anxiety among people who have normal
age-related memory lapses.

A decline in thinking, learning, and judgment skills due
to aging is nearly universal. Beginning as early as our late 40s and 50s, almost everyone
experiences some degree of memory loss. As brain processing speed slows,
we become slower to retrieve information and slower to learn new things.

Early cognitive decline seldom interferes with normal living. It may progress to
mild cognitive impairment (MCI) that is characterized by minimal occupational
impairment, increased difficulty with complex tasks, greater problems with memory
or attention compared to others of the same age. MCI is not Alzheimer disease
or dementia, but it makes it four times more likely that a person will progress to
dementia. MCI is estimated to affect far more people than those with dementia,
perhaps 10% to 20% of Americans older than age 65. A review of the management
of MCI suggests there is value in interventions focused on aerobic exercise, mental
activity, and cardiovascular risk factor control. So far, no drug has proven to be

Many people have normal age-related memory lapses, and others have reversible
cognitive issues secondary to stress, depression, or lack of sleep. But to make the
diagnosis of dementia requires a finding of significant impairment of at least two of
the following mental functions:
• Memory
• Communication and language
• Ability to focus and pay attention
• Reasoning and judgment
Preventing Dementia
• Visual perception

This blog presents opinions and ideas and is intended to provide helpful general information. I am not engaged in rendering advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures and suggestions in that are presented are not in any way a substitute for the advice and care of the reader’s own physician or other medical professional based on the reader’s own individual conditions, symptoms or concerns. If the reader needs personal medical, health, dietary, exercise or other assistance or advice the reader should consult a physician and/or other qualified health professionals. The author specifically disclaims all responsibility for any injury, damage or loss that the reader may incur as a direct or indirect consequence of following any directions or suggestions given in this blog or participating in any programs described in this blog or in the book, The Building Blocks of Health––How to Optimize Your Health with a Lifestyle Checklist (available in print or downloaded at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble and elsewhere). Copyright 2021 by J. Joseph Speidel.