Home' Intouch : In Touch Autumn 2015 Contents 12 IN TOUCH AUTUMN 2015
New research suggests that playing a musical instrument
during adulthood is associated with reduced risk of
cognitive impairment and dementia. Researchers analysed
data from 157 sets of twins, with one in each pair having
been diagnosed with a form of dementia or a cognitive
impairment, allowing researchers to control for genetic and
environmental factors to determine risk factors unique to the
twin with dementia, as well as protective factors exclusive to
the healthy twin.
Of the 157 sets of twins, 31 individuals identified that they
played musical instruments, and 27 of these were cognitively
healthy while four had dementia. Analysis (controlling for
gender, education, and physical activity) found that participants
who played an instrument in older adulthood had a 64 per cent
lower likelihood of developing a cognitive impairment.
This result provides evidence that learning a new hobby
(such as a musical instrument) may reduce dementia risk.
For more information about dementia risk reduction
strategies please visit www.yourbrainmatters.org.au
Source: International Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
APP DEVELOPMENT – LEND A HAND
The Dementia Collaborative Research Centre-Assessment
and Better Care (DCRC-ABC) at UNSW is seeking
consultation with experienced carers to guide the
development of an App to support family carers in the
management of behaviour.
Taking part would involve a brief group or individual
discussion with Kim Burns and Ranmalie Jayasinha from
the DCRC team.
Consultation can be conducted at a time convenient to
carers. Information gathered will not be linked to any individual.
For more information, or to take part, contact Kim Burns.
MUSIC LINKED TO
DEMENTIA RISK REDUCTION
A STUDY OF TWINS’ LIFESTYLES HAS SHOWN THAT
PLAYING AND LEARNING A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT
IN ADULTHOOD BENEFITS COGNITIVE ABILITIES.
STAY IN THE LOOP
For the latest in dementia research, visit the
Dementia Research Foundation website and
sign up to the Dementia News enewsletter.
EXERCISE DISCUSSION PAPER
While there is a growing body of evidence for exercise as a
dementia risk reduction strategy, little was known about the
impact exercise could have on the progression of dementia, or
of the flow- on benefits for carers and service providers.
In a small qualitative study conducted by Alzheimer’s Australia
NSW participants identified a number of benefits, including
feeling stronger, improvements in coordination and balance,
and an improved general sense of wellbeing. Some reported
cognitive benefits including reducing the presentation and
progression of dementia, and improvements to alertness and
communication. Emotional and social benefits were also noted.
Benefits to carers included respite opportunities and reductions
in carer stress, while public policy benefits include avoiding,
reducing or deferring the costs associated with hospitalisations,
higher levels of dependence and premature entry to aged care.
Alzheimer’s Australia NSW has made a number of suggestions
to help overcome barriers to exercise participation.
Read the full discussion paper nsw.fightdementia.org.au
CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS
A new study is exploring the impact of a diagnosis of dementia
on a person’s ability to ensure that their needs are met. The
study recognises the importance of listening to people with
dementia and will assist with future service planning.
Find out more from the Dementia Research Foundation.
SPECIALIST DEMENTIA EDUCATION
FOR BUSINESS AND WORKPLACES
THE NATIONAL DEMENTIA HELPLINE
1800 100 500
The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government initiative
Alzheimer’s Australia NSW ABN: 27 109 607 472 Photos: © Lynton Crabb Photography
As the peak body for dementia,
Alzheimer’s Australia is at the forefront
of dementia knowledge and quality
We design education and engagement
programs from foundation learning to
specialist care that meet a variety of
service and educational outcomes.
We also offer consultancy services for
businesses that desire to be recognised
as industry leaders.
Contact the Alzheimer’s Australia NSW education
team: firstname.lastname@example.org or phone
8875 4640 or 8875 4651.
Alzheimer’s Australia provides nationally
recognised dementia training to:
• Improve employee confidence, skills
and capacity to engage with people
• Make your organisation more
• Help your employees to lead a
Get in early, make dementia education
a top priority for your staff in 2014.
27/03/15 1:32 PM
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