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20 Aug

Two Important Brain Skills May Improve as You Age, Study Finds.

Key brain functions connected to memory and decision making can actually improve in older age, researchers say.

Health News Results - 134

Researchers Spot Sign of Alzheimer's Risk That Scammers Love

Could the way a senior handles his or her money offer clues about their risk for Alzheimer's disease?

Yes, according to a new study involving dozens of elderly men and women that found a higher likelihood to give away money to anonymous individuals correlated with a poorer ...

Severe COVID May Age Survivors' Brains 20 Years: Study

A serious bout of COVID-19 can prompt a serious loss of brain power, new research warns, triggering a drop in IQ that's equivalent to aging from 50 to 70 in a matter of months.

"Previous research has indicated that people who have recovered from COVID-19 may suffer from lasting problems in terms of their ability to concentrate and problem solve," noted study author Adam Hampshire. He's an...

Scientists Calculate Perfect Amount of Sleep for Folks Over 40

Are you over 40 and wonder what the magic amount of sleep every night might be? A new study arrives at an answer.

It turns out that seven hours of sleep a night may be the ideal amount for keeping your brain in good health if you're middle-aged or older.

"Getting a good night's sleep is important at all st...

Your Personality May Safeguard Your Aging Brain

Certain personality traits may make older adults more or less vulnerable to waning memory and thinking skills, a new study suggests.

The study, of nearly 2,000 older adults, found that those high on the "conscientious" scale — organized, self-disciplined and productive — were less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment. That refers to subtler problems with memory and other mental...

Bruce Willis Stepping Down From Acting After Brain Disorder Diagnosis

"Die Hard" star Bruce Willis is stepping away from acting following a recent diagnosis of aphasia, a disorder affecting the part of the brain responsible for language.

Willis' ex-wife Demi Moore, current wife Emma Heming Willis and daughters announced his decision in an Instagram post Wednesday, noting that "he has bee...

Memory Issues Plague Long COVID Patients

Memory and concentration problems haunt 7 in 10 patients with long COVID, a pair of new studies indicate.

The findings suggest that COVID-19 has a notable impact on brain health, even if the precise underlying mechanisms remain unclear, B...

Is It 'Pre-Alzheimer's' or Normal Aging? Poll Finds Many Americans Unclear

You regularly can't remember where you left your phone or your book. You keep missing appointments. You often lose your train of thought during conversation.

Many older folks shrug off these instances as so-called "senior moments" -- but experts say this isn't typically part of normal aging.

Instead, these are signs of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), a stage that exists between the...

Getting Active Can Keep Those 'Senior Moments' at Bay

Want to preserve all those precious memories, including your first kiss and how you felt the first time you got behind the wheel of a car?

If you do, start moving: New research shows that when sedentary older adults started to exercise, they showed improvements in episodic memory, or the ability to vividly recall meaningful moments and events.

These benefits were most pronounced amo...

Human Brain Doesn't Slow Down Until After 60

You used to be able to make snap judgments in your 20s, but now it feels like you take a lot longer to react to questions, decisions and challenges put before you.

Don't fret, it's not that you're losing brain power.

Your response time does tend to slow down as you age, but a new study argues that's not because your brain's processing speed is deteriorating.

Your brain remains...

Concussion's Impact on Memory, Thinking May Linger More Than a Year

A person's memory and thinking abilities can still be affected a year after suffering a concussion, a new study finds.

The results suggest that poor mental ("cognitive") outcomes may be more common than once thought, said study author Dr. Raquel Gardner of the University of California, San Francisco.

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Clutter in the Attic: Why Memory Falters With Age

Imagine a closet filled with treasures accumulated during a lifetime of rich experiences. Now, imagine going into that closet to find one specific object.

Only maybe you get distracted by another, more enticing item from your past. Or you find the object you're seeking but it's intertwined with six similar items, and withdrawing the one will drag out the entire tangle.

That's how an...

Brain's Decline Accelerates in Years After Heart Attack

Your heart and brain may often seem at odds, but they have more in common than you think. A new study shows that a heart attack can lead to faster mental decline over the years.

"We need to realize that what's going on in the heart and brain are...

Take That Walk: Your Aging Brain Will Work Better

Worried about losing your mental faculties as you age? Get out there and exercise, new research suggests.

Physical activity helps keep the aging brain sharp, according to the latest of many studies showing a link between exercise and brain health.

This study included 90 adults, ages 50-74, who wore devices to measure their levels of

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  • February 3, 2022
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  • Survivors of Severe COVID Face Higher Odds for Another Hospitalization Soon After

    People hospitalized for COVID-19 are not necessarily out of the woods once they're discharged: Many land in the hospital again in the months afterward, a large U.K. study finds.

    The researchers found that in the 10 months after leaving the hospital, COVID-19 patients were more than twice as likely to be hospitalized or die, compared to the general population. And even compared with people...

    Keeping Weight Stable Could Help Save Your Brain

    Older adults who maintain a steady weight as they age are less likely to experience rapid cognitive decline, regardless of how much they weigh to start, new research suggests.

    “There's something about maintaining weight and BMI that seems to reflect some health resilience,” said study author Michal Schnaider Beeri, a professor of psychiatry at Icahn Mount Sinai in New York City. (BMI is a...

    New Clues to Why Some Develop 'Brain Fog' After COVID

    Brain fog. It has become an inexplicable side effect of COVID-19 infection, but researchers now report they have discovered a possible reason why it happens.

    In a small study, investigators found abnormalities in the

    Medicare Proposes to Only Cover Alzheimer's Drug Aduhelm for Use in Clinical Trials

    It's a move that could severely limit the number of people taking the controversial new Alzheimer's drug Aduhelm: Medicare on Tuesday proposed to only cover the cost of the pricey medication for people enrolled in approved clinical trials.

    A final decision on coverage is expected later this year.

    The drug costs $28,200 per year, but that cost will only be covered for participants ...

    Scientists Work Out How Exercise Saves Your Brain

    Exercise helps you stay fit, hale and hearty, and researchers say it may also help you stave off dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Now they have a better understanding of the hidden benefits that aid the brain.

    Older folks who are more physically active have higher levels of a protein that promotes better communication between the brain's synapses, a new study reports.

    "Synapses are...

    Aduhelm: Will Medicare Cover the Controversial Alzheimer's Drug?

    Following a months-long and unprecedented review, Medicare officials expect to announce within the next couple of weeks whether the program will cover the controversial Alzheimer's drug Aduhelm. The drug's benefits are in question and its annual price tag tops $28,000.

    The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) tend to cover with little fanfare most drugs approved by its si...

    More U.S. Seniors, Especially Women, Are Retaining Healthy Brains: Study

    The percentage of older Americans reporting serious problems with memory and thinking has declined in recent years -- and higher education levels may be part of the reason, a new study finds.

    Researchers found that between 2008 and 2017, the proportion of older U.S. adults reporting...

    Formaldehyde in the Workplace Tied to Later Brain Issues

    Long-term workplace exposure to formaldehyde may prompt thinking and memory problems later in life, new research suggests.

    Formaldehyde is a gas used in making wood and chemical products and plastics.

    "We know that exposure to formaldehyde has been linked to certain cancers, and our results sugge...

    'Mild Cognitive Impairment' in Older Age Often Disappears, Study Finds

    A diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) might worry an older adult, who could see it as a stepping stone to dementia. But a new study suggests one does not necessarily lead to the other.

    In fact, nearly half of seniors tracked in the study -- all of who had been diagnosed with issues in memory and thinking and received an MCI diagnosis -- no longer had the condition a few years lat...

    Housework Might Boost Your Body & Mind

    Seniors, looking for a way to stay mentally quick and physically strong? Start scrubbing.

    Researchers from Singapore say housework may be a key to keeping your brain sharp as you age.

    Their new study found that in older adults, cleaning house was tied to a better memory and attention span, a...

    Low-Dose Aspirin Won't Affect Dementia Risk in People With Diabetes

    Low-dose aspirin neither reduces nor increases the risk of dementia in adults with type 2 diabetes, a new study finds.

    "This is reassuring that an increase in the risk of dementia is unlikely for the millions of people worldwide who regularly take aspirin to protect against the risk of heart attack and stroke," according to study author Jane Armitage, of the University of Oxford in Englan...

    Reminder Apps on Smartphones May Help in Early Dementia

    Despite stereotypes about seniors and technology, a small study suggests that older adults in the early stages of dementia can use smartphone apps as memory aids.

    The researchers found that older people with mild impairments in memory and thinking were not only able to learn how to use the apps, they said the digital aids made their daily lives easier.

    The apps were not specially de...

    Many People May Be Eating Their Way to Dementia

    Eating lots of fruits, veggies, beans and other foods with inflammation-cooling properties may lower your odds of developing dementia as you age.

    But, if your diet is loaded with pro-inflammatory foods, you may be up to three times more likely to experience memory loss and issues with language, problem-solving and other thinking skills as you age, new research suggests.

    "A less infl...

    Vibration Therapy May Help Body, Mind in People With MS

    Multiple sclerosis patients might be able to think more clearly and move more easily if they regularly undergo whole-body vibration training, a new pilot study reports.

    A small group of MS patients who experienced vibration training showed improvements in decision making, information processing, attention and memory, according to find...

    Could Breastfeeding Help Women Keep Their Smarts as They Age?

    Might breastfeeding affect a new mother's future brain health?

    That's the intriguing question posed by a new study that flips the narrative from the often-touted benefits for baby to what impact breastfeeding might hold for Mom years later.

    Researchers from UCLA Health found that women over age 50 who had breastfed their babies performed better on tests of brain function than those ...

    Long COVID Can Last a Year; Many Sufferers Quit Jobs

    Patients suffering from "long COVID" can have symptoms that last a year or more, putting their jobs and everyday routines in jeopardy, a new study finds.

    Looking at more than 150 people with long-lasting effects from COVID-19, researchers said the patients reported thinking problems, fatigue, brain fog, headache, sleep problems and dizziness.

    "The majority of people who we studied h...

    Recovering COVID Patients Often Face Long-Term 'Brain Fog'

    Even months after beating COVID-19, many people still suffer memory lapses, difficulty concentrating and other symptoms of "brain fog," a new study shows.

    Researchers found that such symptoms were prevalent seven months after a COVID diagnosis -- in both patients who'd been severely ill and hospitalized, and in those who'd managed a mild case at home.

    Along with the endurance of the...

    Retired and Want to Stay Sharp? Hop on the Internet More Often

    Help in retaining mental function when you age could be only a few keystrokes away.

    While crosswords and exercise are often touted as ways to retain thinking skills, U.K. investigators found that the internet may also help seniors stay sharp in retirement.

    Those who used the internet more after their careers ended had substantially higher scores on cognitive, or thinking, tests, acc...

    Signs of Early Alzheimer's May Be Spotted in Brain Stem

    Certain changes in a part of the brain stem, visible in scans, might be a potential early indicator of Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests.

    Using different brain imaging techniques, researchers found that lesser "integrity" in the brain stem region was linked to a faster decline in memory and thinking in older adults, as well as certain brain changes seen in early Alzheimer's.

    Trouble Concentrating at Work? Your Office Air May Be to Blame

    It's fair to say most bosses want their employees to have high productivity.

    Unfortunately, the air that office workers breathe may put a damper on quick thinking and fast work.

    A new study found increased concentrations of fine particulate matter, called PM2.5, and lower ventilation rates were linked to slower response times and reduced accuracy.

    "PM2.5 is a very nasty pollut...

    Postponing Retirement Might Help Keep Dementia at Bay

    Early retirement may sound appealing, but a recent study hints that putting it off a few years might help older adults retain more of their mental sharpness.

    Using data on more than 20,000 older Americans, researchers estimated that if all of those people waited until age 67 to retire, their collective cognitive health would benefit.

    "Cognition" refers to a person's ability to think...

    Exercise Could Help Fight 'Chemo Brain' in Breast Cancer Patients

    For breast cancer patients battling "chemo brain," regular exercise may be a powerful prescription, a new study suggests.

    The term "chemo brain" refers to thinking and memory problems often experienced by patients who undergo chemotherapy.

    It's "a growing clinical concern," said study first author Elizabeth Salerno, an assistant professor of surgery at Washington University School o...

    Neuro Surprise: Some Brain Skills Might Improve With Age

    There's an old saying, "Age and guile beat youth and exuberance," and new research suggests there might be something to that.

    Some key brain functions can improve in people as they age, researchers report, challenging the notion that our mental abilities decline across the board as we grow old.

    With increasing age, many people appear to get better at focusing on important matters an...

    Want to Avoid Dementia? Add Some Color to Your Plate

    Something as simple as having a glass of orange juice in the morning or an apple at lunch could be one of the keys to protecting your brain health.

    People who consumed just a half serving a day of foods high in a naturally occurring compound called flavonoids had a 20% lower risk of mental decline, according to a new study.

    "We think it may have important public health i...

    Reading, Puzzles May Delay Alzheimer's by 5 Years: Study

    An active mind in old age may delay Alzheimer's disease by up to five years, a new study suggests.

    Activities like reading, writing letters, playing cards or doing puzzles may prolong brain health even for those in their 80s, researchers say.

    "The key element is that you're processing information," said lead researcher Robert Wilson, a professor in the neurological sciences departme...

    Healthy Living Can Lower Your Odds for Alzheimer's

    Alzheimer's disease has no cure, but one expert says it may be possible to reduce the risks of developing the disease with healthy lifestyle changes.

    There are two different types of Alzheimer's. Early-onset typically affects patients before age 65. Late-onset affects older adults.

    "Early-onset dementia often is linked to genetics and can run in families," said Dr. Chen Zhao, a neur...

    Mental Confusion an Early Warning Sign of Severe COVID-19

    COVID-19 patients with mental confusion are at increased risk for a severe form of the illness, a new study finds.

    Researchers analyzed the electronic health records of more than 36,000 COVID-19 patients at five Florida hospitals. Of those, 12% developed severe COVID-19.

    Patients with mental confusion were three times more likely to develop severe illness than those without such sym...

    When Is Your Very Earliest Memory?

    Your earliest memories may stretch back to a younger age than previously thought, new research suggests.

    The study found that people can recall back to an average age of 2½ years old, which is a year earlier than suggested by previous studies.

    The findings from the 21-year study were recently published online in the journal Memory.

    "When one's earliest memory occurs,...

    Can Your Blood Pressure Medicine Protect Your Memory?

    Older adults who use certain blood pressure drugs may retain more of their memory skills as they age, a new study suggests.

    Researchers found the benefit among older people taking medications that are allowed past the "blood-brain barrier," which is a border of specialized cells that prevents toxic substances from crossing into the brain.

    Those drugs include certain ACE inhibitors a...

    Pot Use May Change the Teenage Brain, MRIs Show

    Smoking pot appears to affect teens' brain development, altering it in ways that could diminish their reasoning, decision-making and memory skills as they age, a new study reports.

    Brain scans of about 800 teenagers found that those who started smoking pot tended to have increased thinning of the cerebral cortex -- the outer layer of the brain responsible for thought, perception and langu...

    Could a Type of Statin Raise Dementia Risks?

    Certain cholesterol-lowering drugs might speed dementia in some older adults whose memories are starting to fail, a small, preliminary study suggests.

    The researchers found that of 300 older adults with mildly impaired thinking and memory, those using "lipophilic" statins were more likely to develop dementia over the next eight years.

    Lipophilic statins include such widely used medi...

    Why Don't People Have Memories of Their Infancy?

    New insight into why you don't remember your earliest years of life is provided in a new study.

    "A fundamental mystery about human nature is that we remember almost nothing from birth through early childhood, yet we learn so much critical information during that time -- our first language, how to walk, objects and foods, and social bonds," said senior author Nick Turk-Browne, a professor ...

    Road to Healthy Middle-Aged Brain May Begin in Childhood

    Could having heart disease risk factors in childhood sow the seeds of thinking declines in middle-age?

    It looks like it might, new research claims.

    "I think it was not so big of a surprise for us, but maybe for the scientific community who have been focusing mainly on the midlife risk factors and old-age cognition," said study co-author Suvi Rovio. She is senior researcher of cardio...

    Higher Education Won't Help Preserve the Aging Brain: Study

    That college degree may be useful in many ways, but new research suggests it probably won't keep your brain from shrinking with age.

    Over the years, a number of studies have suggested that education might buffer people against age-related declines in memory and thinking. But those findings did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.

    In the new study, researchers asked whether peo...

    Head Injury, Alzheimer's Appear to Affect Brain in Similar Ways

    Alzheimer's disease and traumatic brain injury appear to affect the brain in similar ways, according to a study that may point to new ways to identify people at high risk for Alzheimer's.

    "These findings are the first to suggest that cognitive impairment following a traumatic brain injury is useful for predicting the magnitude of Alzheimer's-like brain degradation," said study author Andr...

    Lullaby Effect: Music Can Speed Your Way to Sleep, Study Finds

    Music hath charms to soothe you off to slumber, new research suggests.

    The study found that calming tunes at bedtime seem to help older people struggling with insomnia.

    "We found music therapy was effective for older adults with sleep disturbance," said study co-author Yen-Chin Chen, an associate professor of nursing at National Cheng Kung University in Tainan, Taiwan.

    That's ...

    Women More Prone to Concussion's Long-Term Harms: Study

    After a concussion, women may be at heightened risk of lasting physical and mental symptoms, a new study finds.

    The study of 2,000 concussion sufferers found that women were more likely than men to still have some symptoms one year later. The problems included fuzzy memory and difficulty concentrating, as well as headaches, dizziness or fatigue.

    In contrast, women and men showed sim...

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