and about Things Chinese scientists also reported, in a recent study, that a pet, a companion that a person takes care of while alleviating loneliness, can be a great help in maintaining a healthy mental state in old age. University of Canton scientists examined nearly eight thousand subjects over a decade – although the research did not provide details
Exactly what type of animals were kept by observation.
Scholars have focused primarily on verbal abilities. They investigated how well they retained verbal information, how fluent people's communication changes, how often they forget certain words, and at what rate their cognitive abilities decline.
As a result of the research, they discovered that those who lived alone, but also kept animals, had less memory loss on average than those who did not. On the other hand, it is interesting that for those who did not live alone, the fact of keeping animals was an insignificant influencing factor.
Thus, the researchers came to the conclusion that a pet can compensate for the lack of human relationships in this way as well. For this reason, they believe that after the loss of a spouse or partner, it can be an ideal help for the elderly, if they have to take care of another living being.
It's not just a matter of genetics
According to Yanzi Li, lead author of Jama Network Open, it has long been known that loneliness is a significant risk factor in dementia and memory loss, which is why the current research is important, which has proven that animals are not only protective of humans. From isolation, but they also have a positive mindset and can also have an influence on them.
It is worth noting that, comparing animal keepers living in the community with those living alone, there is no clear difference in the deterioration of verbal abilities (…) These results indicate that keeping animals can fully compensate for the rapid deterioration in verbal memory and fluency in animals. Older adults resulting from loneliness
The scientist said.
Based on the Stuff article, and in recent research that arrived at the beginning of the week, scientists have also discovered that early-onset dementia does not depend solely on genetics, contrary to previous assumptions. According to researchers from the University of Exeter and Maastricht University, social isolation, depression, loneliness, health problems, poverty and lack of education are all risk factors.
Sebastian Köhler, a researcher in neuroepidemiology at Maastricht University, put it this way:
We already know from research on older people with dementia that there are many variable risk factors. In addition to physical factors, maintaining mental health also plays an important role, including avoiding chronic stress, loneliness, and depression. However, it was surprising to me that this is also the case in juvenile dementia, providing new opportunities to reduce its risk.
According to Leah Morsalen, head of clinical research at Alzheimer's Research UK, the concept of dementia is beginning to change, as researchers begin to understand the factors that cause it, and ways to increase and reduce risk. Over time, this could be a huge help in combating dementia more effectively not only at the individual level, but also at the societal level.
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