Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A Busy Social Life Keeps Aging Minds Sharp

Live a healthy lifestyle living. Be Active. As we age, we tend to lose interest in some of the things we used to love doing when we were younger. This is not a good symptom of aging, for keeping a very inactive social life can lead to earlier memory complications in aging adults.

According to a new study conducted by lead researcher Karen Ertel of the Department of Society, Human Development and Health at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, maintaining a socially active lifestyle can help boost our self-esteem and self-worth, thus, resulting to a sharpened mind and memory. The study also showed that a consistently busy social interaction can also give aging individuals new challenges, hence, keeping their brain active and responsive.

Ertel and her team focused on a collected data on more than 15,000 Americans, age 50 and above who were part of the health and Retirement Study. During the research, the participants were made to memorize a list of 10 words to test their mind and memory. The researchers tested a recall of the words for six years in order to evaluate any decline and delay recall.

The memory scores showed a decline from 11 in year 1998 to 10 in 2004. Researchers said that aging adults who were more socially busy at the beginning of the study have slower memory loss as compared to those who were socially inactive.

Researchers of the said study concluded that social activity can significantly help preserve or maintain an aging adult's cognitive functioning. Apart from boosting an elderly's cognitive abilities, keeping a busy lifestyle can also result to a better physical health condtion.

With this latest news, I have come up with a short list on how to help our elderly relatives in maintaining the sharpness of their mind and memory:

Encourage them to join social or community development groups.
By joining social or community development groups, our aging folks will surely be busy in planning activities and meeting new people.

Help them develop a productive hobby and practice a new sport.
A new hobby or sport can keep their minds busy and occupied.

Let them join exercise programs for aging adults.
Almost all communities have exercise programs fit for all ages. Letting your aging adults join an exercise program that accepts elderly members is a good move to keep their cognitive and physical functioniong continously active.

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails