A report in the New York times suggests a possible link between depression and later in life dementia. The Times report cites a study from the British Journal of Psychiatry. Although the study conductors could not find a direct causative link between depression and dementia, they note that there does appear to be a correlation. The study suggests that older adults suffering from depression could be sixty percent more likely to develop Alzheimer’s than adults without depression. Furthermore, the Times reports that this report is the first to link depression with vascular dementia in such a strong manner.
The exact root of the link between depression and dementia is unclear. The researchers, while not suggesting that the development of these mental deficiencies can be avoided, do suggest that early detection and treatment of depression could serve to circumvent the correlation that they noticed. Early treatment also improves quality of life for sufferers of depression, as advances have been made in recent years with the analysis of brain chemistry and the causes and signs of depression.
The article in the Times links to several other studies conducted in recent years which suggest similar ties between depression and dementia/Alzheimer’s. To read the full article, go to the New York Times website here.