The Alzheimer’s Association International Conference is an annual meeting comprised of the world’s leading clinical researchers, clinicians, and cognition experts activated by the advancement of dementia science. Recently Ladders reported on one of the more promising new studies that debuted at the 2019 conference this past Sunday, which indexed five activities purported to dramatically decrease the correlative risks associated with cognitive decline.
Presently, categorical causal links are mostly unavailable to experts, but because people are living much longer, and medical resources for the elderly are much more accessible, researchers have been noting a spike in reported cases of cognition failure. Every five years that you live past the age of 60, you double your risk for developing some form of dementia, which means one in five people over the age of 80 suffer from neurodegenerative decline.
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A study published in the Journal Neurology back in 2014 identified depression as a potential predictor of the development of dementia later in life. After employing a crop of 1,700 participants aged 77, investigators discovered that those that evidenced symptoms of depression before the beginning of the study period were strongly linked to a decline in memory and critical thinking skills.
Members of the LGBTQ more likely to suffer from Dementia
A study of over 44,000 adults between the ages of 45 and 80 found that members of the LGBT community were 29% more likely to report memory loss, trouble performing simple tasks like cooking and cleaning in addition to expressing higher instances of general confusion related symptoms compared to the heterosexual respondents surveyed.
“While we do not yet know for certain why sexual or gender minority individuals had higher subjective cognitive decline, we believe it may be due to higher rates of depression, inability to work, high stress, and a lack of regular access to healthcare,” commented Jason Flatt in a statement, who is the lead author of the recent study and an assistant professor at the Institute for Health & Aging at UCSF.
For whatever reason LGBT members were also 60% more likely to live alone and more than 59% less likely to have a caregiver.” Research linking depression and dementia has been gaining traction in the last couple of years, companioned by increasing reports of violence enacted on the queer community. A recent study revealed that younger generations are actually becoming less comfortable with the community every year. It’s not beyond the pale of reason to suspect prolonged feelings of dejection and social angst would submit some degree of cognitive consequences.
Maria C. Carillo, Ph.D., and the Alzheimer’s Association chief science officer concluded, “As expanding research efforts continue to teach us more about the variability of Alzheimer’s and other dementias — for example by sex, race, genetics and exposure to environmental factors — the Alzheimer’s Association will fund, and encourage others to fund, more studies in LGBT and other diverse populations,”