• Vascular cognitive impairment (or a decline in thinking skills caused by brain cells having been deprived of vital oxygen and nutrients) affects up to 60 per cent of stroke survivors and is associated with poorer recovery and decreased ability to function.

  • Pre-existing dementia increases the risk of stroke.

  • Vascular damage increases the risk of dementia more than the increase of plaques and tangles in the brain.

This year, Ontarians caring for family members and friends with dementia will contribute an estimated 112 million unpaid caregiving hours. This number is expected to surpass 140 million hours by 2020.

RISK FACTORS FOR STROKE, DEMENTIA AND HEART DISEASE CAN BE MITIGATED BY THE SAME HEALTHY LIFESTYLE CHANGES, I.E. EXERCISING, EATING RIGHT, CHALLENGING THE BRAIN AND STAYING SOCIAL

  • In older adults without Alzheimer’s disease, those who were very physically active were 40 per cent less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than those who were inactive.[1]
  • Healthy eating can reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. And by reducing the risks of these diseases, the risk of dementia is also decreased.

THE PUBLIC, PHYSICIANS, PATIENTS AND THEIR CARE PARTNERS NEED KNOWLEDGE AND STRATEGIES TO ADDRESS DISEASE PREVENTION, EARLY DIAGNOSES AND DISEASE MANAGEMENT

  • Approximately one in three people will develop stroke, dementia, or both, and the incidence for both increases exponentially with age.
  • Improving the care system by identifying opportunities for collaboration toward healthier lifestyles will benefit all Ontarians.
  • In honour of Stroke Month, the Ontario Stroke Network, the Alzheimer Society of Ontario, and the Heart and Stroke Foundation are collaborating on similar messages and recommendations.

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