According to recent studies, elderly people who can smell the roses, turpentine, paint thinner, and lemons, may have a lower risk of developing dementia.
In a study at the University of California, San Francisco, researchers tracked close to 1,800 participants in their seventies for up to 10 years to see if their sensory functioning are correlated with the development of dementia. At the time of registration, all participants were dementia-free, but the 328 participants (18%) developed the condition during the study.
Among those whose sensory level is in the middle range, 141 of 328 (19%) developed dementia. This compares with 83 in a good range (12%) and 104 (27%) in the poor range, according to the study, which was published in Alzheimer’s & dementia: the journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.
The focus of researchers from UCSF was on the effect of the summation of multiple violations of sensory functions, which the evidence shows a more significant decrease of cognition.
“Sensory impairments can be caused by underlying neurodegeneration or disease processes, such as those affecting cognition, such as stroke,” said first author Willa Brenowitz, Ph. D., Department of psychiatry and behavioral Sciences, University of California, and the Weill Institute of neuroscience.
“In addition, sensory impairments, particularly hearing and eyesight, can accelerate the decline of cognitive functions that directly affect cognition or indirectly by increasing social isolation, poor mobility, and adverse mental health,” Brenowitz added.
While multiple violations were the key to the work of researchers, the authors recognized that a heightened sense of smell, or olfaction, has a strong Association for the fight against dementia than touch, hearing or vision. Participants whose smell has decreased by 10 percent was 19 percent greater chance of developing dementia, compared to one to three percent increased risk for a relevant decrease of vision, hearing and touch.
“Olfactory bulb, which is crucial for the sense of smell is affected quite early in the course of the disease. It is believed that the smell may be a preclinical indicator of dementia, while hearing and sight can play a big role in the development of dementia,” said Brenowitz.
In 1,794 participants were recruited from a random sample of adult medical care, health, aging and the study of body composition. Cognitive tests were performed at baseline and repeated every year. Dementia is determined by testing, which showed a significant reduction from the original scores, documented use of drugs dementia, or hospitalization for the treatment of dementia as a primary or secondary diagnosis.
Multi-sensor testing was conducted in the third to fifth year, and hearing (hearing aid not allowed), contrast sensitivity tests vision (glasses are permitted), sensory testing, where vibration was measured in the big toe, and smell, including to identify the distinctive smells like paint-thinner, roses, lemons, onions and turpentine.
The researchers found that the participants who remained dementia-free as a rule, had higher knowledge in enrollment and, as a rule, do not have sensory impairments. Those in the middle range, usually a few easy functional impairment or one moderate and severe violations. Participants at high risk was somewhat moderate and severe violations.
“We found that with the deterioration of the multi-touch operation, the risk of cognitive impairment increases in a “dose-response” way,” said senior author Kristin Jaffe, doctor of medical Sciences from the University of California of the Department of psychiatry and behavioral Sciences, epidemiology and biostatistics, and neurology, as well as the San Francisco VA health care system.
“Even a mild or moderate sensory impairments in multiple domains were associated with an increased risk of dementia, indicating that people with poor function of multi-touch are a high-risk population that can be directed to dementia for intervention,” added the author.
780 participants with a good multi-touch function were more likely to be healthier than 499 participants with poor multi-touch function, suggesting that some habits can play a role in reducing the risk of dementia.
The first group was more likely to have completed high school (85% vs. 72.1%), had less diabetes (16.9 per cent compared with 27.9 per cent), and were slightly less likely to have cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and stroke.
(This story was published by wire Agency to feed without changes to the text. Only the title was changed.)
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