A study of over 500,000 people in the UK and Canada linked social isolation with symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD).
Researchers examined data from over 500,000 UK Biobank participants and 30,097 individuals enrolled in the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging. Participants were asked about loneliness, frequency of social interaction, and social support.
The data showed that many lifestyle factors previously associated with ADRD, including smoking, alcohol consumption, sleep disturbances, and reduced physical activity, are associated with loneliness and lack of social support. Additionally, participants who reported having physical and mental health conditions associated with ADRD, such as cardiovascular disease, visual impairment, hearing impairment, diabetes, and depression, had subjective and objective social isolation. Researchers have found that it is likely that
The results highlight the potential importance of subjective and objective social isolation contributing to ADRD, said Danilo Bzdok, M.D., Ph.D., and colleagues at McGill University, Canada. The need to pay attention to these factors is especially true for older people, and clinicians and policy makers need to be vigilant, they added.
“Compared with other ADRD risk factors such as ApoE4 genotype, social isolation is arguably easier to modify and therefore targeted modification holds particular promise,” they concluded. .
Full findings Published in pro swan.
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