A friend for the brain
From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.
Socializing with family and friends is enjoyable. And for elderly women, it can mean more. It can help them improve thinking ability, and might help to prevent dementia.
Women often experience increasing social isolation as they get older. Dr. Valerie Crooks of the Southern California Kaiser Permanente Medical Group found elderly women with smaller social networks were more likely to develop dementia.
"There is a variety of ways in which one can stay engaged and it is usually through your community services." (4 seconds)
Senior centers and libraries offer social and educational programs for the elderly. Even simple interactions like communicating by email and telephone are also helpful.
The study in the American Journal of Public Health was supported by the National Institutes of Health.
Learn more at hhs.gov.HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.
Last revised: May 7, 2011