Sep 25, 2018

How Long Do You Live After Being Diagnosed With Dementia?

Predicting someone’s lifespan is not an exact science, and it probably never will be.

If you can begin to imagine the amount of differences within the lifestyle, age and general health of your inner circle, imagine then, the amount of variables found while surveying larger audiences from various corners of the globe.

Put simply, anyone is unique when compared to everyone else.

With this in mind, it would be quite conceivable to imagine that focusing a study of mortal longevity into a smaller and more specific group of people would make lifespan prediction easier to predict.

Unfortunately though, when this question is posed regarding those dealing with dementia, the variables become greater, making accurate lifespan assessment even more difficult.

Dementia is defined as a series of symptoms that are caused by various disorders that affect the brain. Meaning that it is not actually a disease.

There are 5 common types of dementia, each bringing with them varied estimations in regards to lifespan.


Alzheimer’s Disease-

Life expectancy for an someone with Alzheimer’s disease is tentatively graded at anywhere approximately between 8-12 years once diagnosed. Surveys have also seen individual cases with numbers as low as 3 years or as long as 20 years of life once diagnosed with alzheimer’s disease.


Vascular Dementia-

Life expectancy for someone with vascular dementia is approximately 4 years once diagnosed. Individuals with vascular dementia are more prone to suffering strokes which can become a major factor in lifespan decline.


Lewy Body Dementia-

Life expectancy for somebody with Lewy Body Dementia is a span of 5-7 years from the onset. Surveys have also seen individual cases with numbers as low as 2 years or as long as 20 years of life once diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia.


Frontotemporal Dementia-

Life expectancy for somebody with Frontotemporal Dementia is regarded as being somewhere around the 8 year mark from when symptoms began.

Although this type of dementia, often referred to as ‘Pick’s Disease,’ also has many examples of people living over 10 years from the onset of their symptoms.


Young-Onset Dementia-

Young-Onset Dementia generally affects people between their 30’s-50’s, but due to the wide spectrum of age groups and other variables involved,

life expectancy data is too inconsistent to gauge. It is currently thought that Young-Onset dementia progresses more quickly than other forms of dementia.  

While there is obviously no definitive answer to how long you will live, after being diagnosed with dementia, there are definitely well defined factors that play a major role in your mortal longevity.



The older a person is, the shorter their life expectancy will generally be. People in a higher age bracket are more susceptible to factors that contribute to death than those of a younger age group.

When dealing with dementia, those of a younger age can hope for a longer life expectancy.



A person with good overall health has a much better chance of living a longer life. Physical and emotional well-being are the cornerstones of longevity, and this is also a factor for those dealing with dementia.



Specific types of dementia have differing life expectancies and some people can be dealing with more than one type of dementia at the same time. Having more than one type of dementia makes lifespan prediction even more difficult.

The information above should be looked upon as a rough guide and not definitive answers.

While we may not have the means to control our age or dementia, we can definitely look to improve our health or the health of a loved one living with dementia as a way to prolong life.

Investing in physical and mental well-being may not be the ultimate panacea for those with dementia, but it will definitely increase the chances of a living a longer life, and a making that life worth living.


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