Expatriate Insurance News: Dementia cure 'is a long time away' -
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Expatriate Insurance News: Dementia cure 'is a long time away'

Expatriates might not be able to access a cure for dementia, even with international private medical insurance, as an expert has said this breakthrough is unlikely to occur soon.

Director of the University of Stirling's Dementia Services Development Centre professor June Andrews said this will not happen in her lifetime.

"We are still a very long way from having anything like that," she declared, noting many intelligent individuals are working extremely hard on this subject at the moment.

The expert explained that dementia is actually a symptom and there are several ailments that can cause it.

Alzheimer's Disease has medicines available for treatment at the moment, while the risk of suffering from vascular dementia can be minimised through healthy habits, she declared.

These include consuming five portions of vegetables and fruit every day, maintaining a low-fat diet, regularly exercising and avoiding getting drunk or smoking, the professor said.

Ms Andrews claimed the only preventable kind of dementia that is known of to date is alcohol-related brain damage.

"A glass of red wine every night is good for you, but getting smashed is very bad for you," she remarked.

People should be aware of the signs of dementia, the expert added, describing one of the key initial features of this condition as "not being able to do things that you used to be able to do".

Ms Andrews explained that this condition is "the diminutions of your previous faculties".

Everyone is forgetful occasionally and although dementia is commonly associated with memory loss, failing to remember subjects can often be due to worrying or being busy, she noted.

However, if someone used to be able to operate a washing machine, cook large meals, fix cars or undertake other tasks but is no longer able to do so, this is a significant warning sign, Ms Andrews asserted.

She described how some doctors will perform tests on individuals they believe could be suffering from dementia, before calling them back again in a few months.

This is to ascertain how a person's cognitive abilities are changing over time, so if a poor score is replicated when the test is performed again but does not worsen, "it's probably something else and not dementia", the professor claimed.

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