Education and professional skills can also reduce the risk of dementia, research says
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – People who start school at an early age and grow up to pursue complex skills have a lower risk of developing dementia, a global study has found.
The study, led by Dr. Hyun Janshal of the Albert Einstein School of Medicine in New York, analyzed data collected on the mental health of more than 10,000 people in six countries on four continents. They ranged in age from 58 to 103, with an average age of 74.
The analysis found that those who reached higher education at an early age, and who later took up skilled occupations, had the lowest rates of dementia.
In addition, good education and the acquisition of complex skills separately from each other were also found to help reduce the risk of dementia.
From an education point of view, experts also found that those who studied up to eighth grade or less had a higher rate of dementia, while those who studied up to twelfth grade had a lower rate. Further higher education did not significantly reduce this rate.
It should be noted that dementia is not a single mental illness but a collective name of various mental illnesses of which Alzheimer’s disease is the most famous.
Previous research has shown that better education and more complex occupational skills are associated with a reduction in dementia, but this is more ambiguous. New research has revealed this relationship in a clear and undeniable way.