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Knowing how to read and write may protect your brain from dementia

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Knowing how to read and write may protect your brain from dementia

A study on older adults (65+) with less than four years of schooling has revealed that being able to read and write may help protect against dementia. Of 938 participants, who were based in Manhattan’s Washington Heights neighborhood, 238 were illiterate. Over time, those who were illiterate developed dementia at an earlier age than those who were literate. Interestingly, the dementia risk was the same for men and women – despite earlier investigations showing that women are at higher risk of dementia.

As efforts to understand and find a cure for Alzheimer’s and dementia continue, this study raises an idea for future research: whether helping people to learn how to read and write can prevent dementia later in life. Head over to Scientific American for more coverage.