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Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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New report by the Institute of Medicine on cognitive health promotion

Title: Cog­ni­tive Aging: Progress in Under­stand­ing and Oppor­tu­ni­ties for Action

Report brief (opens PDF)

Read full report online

Descrip­tion: Peo­ple for­get things—a name, where they put their keys, a phone number—and yet what is dis­missed as a minor incon­ve­nience at 25 years of age, can evolve into a momen­tary anx­i­ety at 35, and a major source of per­sonal worry at ages 55 or 60. For­get­ful­ness at older ages is often equated with a decline in Read the rest of this entry »

Why retirement planning should include mental fitness

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Are You Men­tally Fit Enough to Plan for Retire­ment? (Money):

In this era of “self-directed” retire­ment (no pen­sions, you make all the invest­ment choices) post­pon­ing mak­ing a real plan poses a par­tic­u­lar risk to future secu­rity. Not only are the logis­tics of plan­ning hard enough—when to col­lect Social Secu­rity, how to bud­get for expenses, what to do with savings—but the decline in cog­ni­tion that Read the rest of this entry »

Q: What do people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, addiction, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and anxiety have in common? A: A brain with similar gray-matter loss

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Dif­fer­ent men­tal dis­or­ders cause same brain-matter loss, study finds (press release):

A meta-analysis of 193 brain-imaging stud­ies shows sim­i­lar gray-matter loss in the brains of peo­ple with diag­noses as dif­fer­ent as schiz­o­phre­nia, depres­sion and addiction…The find­ings call into ques­tion a long­stand­ing ten­dency to dis­tin­guish psy­chi­atric dis­or­ders chiefly by their symp­toms rather than their under­ly­ing brain pathol­ogy. Read the rest of this entry »

Study: Internet-based screening can help detect aging-related cognitive deficits

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We just came across a new and fas­ci­nat­ing sci­en­tific paper, titled Devel­op­ment and eval­u­a­tion of a self-administered on-line test of mem­ory and atten­tion for middle-aged and older adults, and pub­lished at Fron­tiers in Aging Neu­ro­science. Here is the very read­able abstract:

There is a need for rapid and reli­able Internet-based screen­ing tools for cog­ni­tive assess­ment in middle-aged and older adults. We report the psy­cho­me­t­ric prop­er­ties of an on-line tool designed to screen for cog­ni­tive deficits that Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Should Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (not antidepressant drugs) be the first-line treatment for depression?

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Time for Sharp­Brains’ Novem­ber e-newsletter, fea­tur­ing a wealth of brain health insights, neu­ro­science and psy­chol­ogy research reports…and some fun brain teasers. Enjoy!

New think­ing:

New research:

New solu­tions:

 

Finally, you may want to try these quick brain teasers to exer­cise your atten­tion and work­ing mem­ory.

Enjoy a happy Thanks­giv­ing and a great month of December!

- The Sharp­Brains Team

Study: Shift work chronically impairs cognition


Long-Term Shift Work Linked To Impaired Brain Func­tion (Forbes):

Accord­ing to results of a new study, long-term shift work may lead to impaired brain power which could involve cog­ni­tive skills such as think­ing, rea­son­ing and memory…The impact was much greater after a period of 10 or more years of such a work pat­tern — and seen to be much greater for those work­ing a rotat­ing shift pat­tern Read the rest of this entry »

Next in mental health, substance abuse: Preventive interventions to strengthen working memory

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Strong work­ing mem­ory puts brakes on prob­lem­atic drug use (Med­ical Xpress):

Ado­les­cents with strong work­ing mem­ory are bet­ter equipped to escape early drug exper­i­men­ta­tion with­out pro­gress­ing into sub­stance abuse issues…Most impor­tant in the pic­ture is exec­u­tive atten­tion, a com­po­nent of work­ing mem­ory that involves a person’s abil­ity to Read the rest of this entry »

New online course: How to Nav­i­gate Con­ven­tional and Com­ple­men­tary ADHD Treat­ments for Healthy Brain Development

Haven’t read this book yet?

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