Risk Factors

Below are a list of risk factors that can be changed or removed in order to reduce the risk of developing dementia. These risk factors contribute to the an increased risk of developing dementia, they do not categorically result the development of dementia.

Modifiable risk factors include:

•Lifestyle – alcohol, smoking, social isolation

•Physical inactivity etc.

•Low education

•Physical disorders/conditions

•Diabetes, obesity


The diagram below illustrates the various risk factors above and the percentage with which they increase a person’s chances of developing dementia. These risk factors are present throughout a person’s lifetime.

Less education and hearing loss represent the largest risk factors.

Researchers have found that more education makes people better able to cope with changes in the brain associated with dementia. Research suggests that mild hearing loss can double dementia risk. Moderate loss can triple the risk, and people with a severe hearing impairment are up to five times more likely to develop dementia

Please click on the next lesson to explore methods for prevention of dementia

Lesson Content