Timely Depression Treatment May Decrease Future Dementia Risk

Doctor talking to the patient about menopause and treatment in future.Depression is a serious mental health condition that can cause long-term adverse effects, such as dementia, if left untreated. Now research suggests that the timing of the treatment for depression may help to decrease the risk of dementia later in life. Read on to learn more about this finding and how you can get help if you’re struggling with depression.

Dementia is a disabling neurocognitive condition that mainly affects older adults. It is characterized by a decline in cognitive function and can lead to problems with memory, language, and thinking. According to the World Health Organization, over 55 million people worldwide live with dementia.


The majority of people with dementia are over the age of 80. However, dementia is not a normal part of aging, and younger people can develop the condition. There is no known cure for dementia, but there are treatments that can help to improve symptoms and slow down the progression of the disease.

A new study from China suggests that the link between depression and dementia could be altered depending on the timing of the treatment. Researchers used data
data collected by the UK Biobank, a population-based cohort of over 500,000 participants. A total of 350,000 participants were included in the study. During the course of the study, 46,280 people were diagnosed with depression and 725 of those developed dementia.

During the study, participants were placed in one of four categories of depression: increasing course, in which mild initial symptoms steadily increase; decreasing course, starting with moderate- or high-severity symptoms but subsequently decreasing; chronically high course of ongoing severe depressive symptoms; and chronically low course, where mild or moderate depressive symptoms are consistently maintained.

The study found that depression elevated the risk of dementia by 51% compared to non-depressed participants. However, the risk of participants developing dementia depended on the course of depression. Those with chronically high or increasing depression were more vulnerable to dementia, whereas those with decreasing depression had no greater risk than those without dementia.

Researchers then set out to find if the risk for dementia could be lowered by receiving depression treatment. They found that overall, depressed participants who received treatment had a reduction of risk when compared to untreated participants by about 30%. The timing of the treatment also seemed to make a difference in the risk reduction.

“Once again, the course of ineffectively treated depression carries significant medical risk,” said John Krystal, MD. In this case, symptomatic depression increases dementia risk by 51%, whereas treatment was associated with a significant reduction in this risk.”


“This indicates that timely treatment of depression is needed among those with late-life depression,” added Professor Cheng. “Providing depression treatment for those with late-life depression might not only remit affective symptoms but also postpone the onset of dementia.”

Enhancing Cognitive Function

While some degree of cognitive decline is nearly inevitable as you age, this study shows how other factors, such as depression, can take a toll on the ability of the brain to function at peak potential. This can affect memory, concentration, and overall brain function.

The Smart Pill can help to enhance cognitive function and memory through 9 ingredients that help to support, nourish, and maximize brain health. These include ginkgo biloba, huperzine A, bacopa extract, rosemary extract, and a B vitamin complex. The formulation of these ingredients is an excellent way to help fight free radicals, boost circulation, and provide nutritional support to assist with cognitive function.

Author Bio

Sarah began her interest in nutritional healing at an early age. After going through health problems and becoming frustrated with the conventional ways doctors wanted to treat her illness (which were not working), she took it upon herself to find alternative treatments. This led her to revolutionize her own diet to help her get healthier and tackle her health problems. She began treating her illness by living a more balanced lifestyle through healthy food choices, exercise and other alternative medicine such as meditation. This total positive lifestyle change led her to earn a diploma in Nutritional Therapy from Health Sciences Academy in London, England. Today, Sarah enjoys helping others by teaching healthy lifestyle changes through her personal consultations and with her regular contributions to the Doctors Health Press. Also, passionate about following her dreams in life, Sarah moved to France and lived in Paris for over 5 years where she earned a certification in beadwork and embroidery from Lesage (an atelier owned by Chanel). She then went on to be a familiar face sitting front row and reporting from Paris Fashion Week. Sarah continues to practice some of the cultural ways of life she learned while in Europe. They enjoy their food, and take the time to relax and enjoy many of life’s little moments. These are life lessons she is glad to have brought back home with her.