For 10 years, Gary LeBlanc of Spring Hill, Florida, was the caregiver for his father, who had Alzheimer's disease before passing away in 2009. The next year, his mother began experiencing vascular dementia, the second most common cause of dementia after Alzheimer's disease in people over 65.
In a telephone interview, 54-year-old LeBlanc said, “So it's been an 18-year journey for me. I've been involved with (dementia) non-stop. My mom is in hospice now and is dying of vascular dementia. It is what it is. It came out of her diabetes.” According to the National Institutes of Health, vascular dementia “is caused by a series of small strokes” and risk factors for getting it include diabetes, hardening of the arteries, smoking, high blood pressure, and stroke.