Having a lot of worries can affect you brain later, research published in the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia found.
According to a study: People who experienced high levels of anxiety – like constantly worrying or feeling tense, or frequently experiencing physical symptoms like stomach knots or butterflies – were nearly 1.5 times more likely to develop dementia compared to their chilled out counterparts.
The connection for this disease are still not fully understand, but they have a guess: “When we’re anxious or stressed, we excrete higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol,” says lead study author Andrew Petkus, Ph.D., a research associate at the University of Southern California.
The cortisol hormone can be useful in the short-term, when you need to concentrate and be more productive, like you need to focus on something or finish a stressful work.
According to Petkus: In the long-term, the high level of cortisol hormone could damage your hippocampus, the part of your brain involved in forming, organizing, and storing memories.
Scientists aren’t sure yet whether treating high anxiety now can reduce your risk of dementia later on, but it’s something Petkus and his group plans on studying in the future.
If you’re plagued by constant worrying, we suggest you to get that under control. This control on yourself is good for health and regardless of whether it will lower your dementia risk down the line. We are sure the control on yourself is good, because feeling anxious all the time makes you feel like crap – which makes it harder to have fun and enjoy your life.
If your anxiety starts to interfere with everyday life, like if you have trouble sleeping or can’t complete your work, you should talking with a therapist or taking anti-anxiety or anti-depressant meds.