Latest Senior Health News


People With Alzheimer's Genes May Lose Sense of Smell First

People With Alzheimer`s Genes May Lose Sense of Smell FirstWEDNESDAY, July 26, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- People who carry a gene that's associated with Alzheimer’s disease may lose their sense of smell long before memory and thinking problems occur, a new study suggests. This early sign of potential dementia is not seen in people who don't carry this gene, called APOE e4, researchers report July 26 in the journal Neurology."Testing a person’s ability to detect odors may be a useful way to predict future problems with cognition," said researcher Dr. Matthew GoodSmith, a resident at the University of Chicago. "While more research is needed to confirm these findings and determine what level of smell loss would predict future risk, these results could be promising, especially in studies aiming to identify people at risk for dementia early in...

Many Seniors With Thinking Declines Still Drive

25 July 2023
Many Seniors With Thinking Declines Still DriveTUESDAY, July 25, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Getting older adults who are failing mentally to relinquish their car keys can be challenging. But those conversations are necessary, said researchers who found a majority of adults with cognitive impairment still get behind the wheel.Michigan Medicine researchers studied this issue in a South Texas community. They found that more than 600 adults over age 65 in Nueces County had cognitive assessment scores -- scores of thinking and memory -- that indicated a likelihood of impairment.Among them, more than 61% were current drivers. About one-third of their caregivers had concerns about the drivers' abilities to safely navigate the roads.“It is likely appropriate that some with mild cognitive impairment are still driving, but for some it may...

Dementia Patients Wind up in the ER 1.4 Million Times a...

25 July 2023
Dementia Patients Wind up in the ER 1.4 Million Times a Year, Study ShowsTUESDAY, July 25, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Emergency rooms can be a frightening place for people suffering from dementia, yet each year 1.4 million Americans with Alzheimer’s or other dementias wind up in crowded, noisy ERs, a new study finds.Dementia is responsible for nearly 7% of all ER visits for those older than 65, often because of accidents or mental health crises, researchers determined."While dementia is thought of as a cognitive or memory disorder, it is the behavioral aspects of the disease such as anxiety, agitation and sleep disturbances that can cause the most stress for caregivers and patients alike," said researcher Dr. Lauren Gerlach, a geriatric psychiatrist at the University of Michigan's medical center."Emergency departments are often not the right place to manage...

Probiotics Are Good for More Than Your Gut

24 July 2023
Probiotics Are Good for More Than Your GutMONDAY, July 24, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Many people turn to probiotics for their digestive woes, but a preliminary study suggests that what's good for gut may also be good for the aging brain.The study involved older adults with mild cognitive impairment, where memory and other thinking skills are starting to slide but people can still carry out their daily tasks. Researchers found that when those individuals took a particular probiotic for three months, their mental abilities improved. And those improvements correlated with specific changes in their gut bacteria.Experts cautioned that the study is preliminary and needs to be backed up by further research."I think it's too early to tell if the effects are robust and reproducible," said Robert Vassar, director of the Mesulam Center...

Omega-3s May Keep Your Hearing Sharp

24 July 2023
Omega-3s May Keep Your Hearing SharpMONDAY, July 24, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- More omega-3 fatty acids in your diet might prevent hearing loss as you age, researchers report.Low levels of the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are linked to hearing loss in middle and old age, according to findings slated for presentation Monday at a meeting of the American Society for Nutrition, in Boston.Middle-aged and older adults with higher DHA levels, however, were 8% to 20% less likely to have age-related hearing issues than those with lower DHA levels, researchers said."Animal models suggest maternal omega-3 fatty acid deficiency alters offspring hearing development, and long-term omega-3 supplementation may be protective for cochlear metabolism and reduce progression of hearing loss," said study leader Michael...

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