Alcohol Related Dementia
Alcohol related dementia is a form of dementia prompted by years of excessive alcohol use and is a very common form of intellectual disorder in older adults. Prolonged exposure to alcohol can affect the central nervous system, causing damage directly to the brain cells. Furthermore, alcohol is a neurotoxin, directly damaging the brain. The brain may also be indirectly damaged by alcohol use, through alcohol-related health problems such as serious nutrient deficiencies or stoke. Although typically seen in adults as they pass middle age and into their senior years, between 50 and 75, signs and symptoms of alcohol-related dementia may begin to appear as early as 30 years old.
The prevalence of alcohol-related dementia is difficult to pin down, in part because of the complex relationship that alcohol has with the central nervous system and the brain, and also because it is often misdiagnosed. Many individuals and families downplay the use of alcohol; however, alcoholism is a significant concern among seniors affecting approximately 5 to 10 percent of the senior population in the U.S.
Ref: World Health Organization: Management of Substance Abuse — Alcohol