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Mind & Mood
Making sense of dementia trends
Medical data can seem confusing. Here’s a way to understand the latest findings.
In the fight against dementia, it’s sometimes hard to tell if we’re winning or losing the war. Some headlines herald the news that dementia rates are declining, while others warn that the number of dementia cases is climbing fast. Here are two recent examples of study findings — and what they suggest about the risks.
One study, led by Harvard researchers and published online July 1, 2020, by Neurology, found that dementia incidence rates have been declining steadily since the 1980s.
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Improving Memory: Understanding age-related memory loss
By age 60, more than half of adults have concerns about their memory. However, minor memory lapses that occur with age are not usually signs of a serious problem, such as Alzheimer’s disease, but rather the result of normal changes in the structure and function of the brain. This report, Improving Memory: Understanding age-related memory loss, describes these normal age-related changes and other more serious causes of memory loss — and how to distinguish between them.
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