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Loneliness Link with Alzheimer's

By Tar De Moutonnoir     Feb 5, 2007 in Health
A large US study suggests that loneliness contributes to the chances of getting Alzheimer's disease.
The study bases its conclusions on tests conducted over a four year period on 800 subjects. The elderly patients were also assessed for dementia and autopsies were performed on 90 of them who had passed away during the study to analyze their nerve cells for certain physical indicators.
Similar studies done on people suffering from dementia and the effects of social isolation but this particular study took into account how people felt, as in their psychological state of mind.
'The team found that the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease increased by 51% for each point of the loneliness score. Those with the highest loneliness score of 3.2 had about 2.1 times the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease compared to those with a low score of 1.4.'
The study suggests that loneliness may affect systems in the brain dealing with cognition and memory, making lonely people more vulnerable to effects of aging. It also highlighted the importance of understanding loneliness has an emotional as well as a physical impact.
This is why the elderly play bingo, it keeps them mentally alert. Socializing is important in maintaining your mental sharpness as opposed to being isolated and alone, makes sense.
More about Loneliness, Link, Alzheimers Disease, Study, Social isolation