In New Zealand Dementia affects some 41,000 people and by 2050 is expected to be nearly 150,000.
Mild cognitive impairment is often the first sign that the condition is on the way. A recent study of nearly 2000 over 70’s by the Mayo Clinic in the US looked at how everyday activities could ward of mental decline for older people over a four year period. They were followed for four years to see how their memories and thinking abilities deteriorated.
It was found that 18% of those in the computer group developed mild cognitive impairment compared with 31% in the group reporting not using computers. Furthermore those who engaged in social activities were 23% less likely to develop memory problems than those who did not. Studies have also found that people who read frequently, dance or play a musical instrument are also less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease.
All of the above show that as we age it is important to keep our minds active. As a recent discoverer of Facebook I can say not only am I helping to keep my mind active but I am also keeping in touch with my families activities. It is great to log on each day and keep up to date with all that is happening to family and friends. If you have not already tried it “give it a go!”
Visiting Service Coordinator, Wellington