Everyone ages differently. Some people suffer from dementia at a relatively early age while others seem to have the cognitive abilities of young adults while at a very advanced age. Scientists may have discovered what makes the difference.
There are some elderly people who seem to keep on going long after most of their peers have begun to lose their cognitive abilities. There are people who even into their 80s and 90s can think just as quickly as much younger people. Researchers refer to these people as “superagers.”
The group is defined as elderly people who have the same cognitive abilities as 25 year olds. However, this is a relatively small group.
Most elderly people will suffer from some form of cognitive impairment and, of course, many suffer from outright dementia.
Medical researchers have been searching for possible reasons why the superagers are so different from most of their peers.
The New York Times reports that a possible reason might have been found in “How to Become a ‘Superager’.”
In a small study, researchers conducted MRIs of some superagers and peers of the same age. The images revealed that superagers brains are thicker in some regions, which suggests more and stronger brain activity.
Interestingly, the differences are not in regions of the brain that are associated with cognitive functions. Instead, the differences are in brain regions associated with emotional functioning.
This study suggests that the key to becoming a superager is to continue to work hard. The emotional regions of the brain are activated and strengthened, when people strain themselves mentally or physically.
The idea is to work until you are tired and frustrated.
While this research is new and small, it does offer some hope for elderly people.
Reference: New York Times (Dec. 13, 2016) “How to Become a ‘Superager’.”
I heard Cindy’s presentation at a Senior Luncheon at my church, and was very impressed. She helped my daughter and me understand many aspects of elder law. Josh has also been very helpful in my planning to enter an independent living situation . I have told many friends about them.
The very best elder law attorney and staff anyone could ever ask for! I have referred a number of clients to Cindy and she never disappoints. She is kind, caring, and extremely thorough in making sure everything is completed as it should be. I highly recommend Cindy for anyone needing lawyer services; she truly goes above and beyond for every client she helps and has had a huge impact in so many peoples’ lives. Thank you, Cindy and staff, for everything that you do- I’m so glad to know you!
Cindy and the Nelson Elder Care Law team are trustworthy and helpful. They are the experts in elder care law. At Leaf Cremation, we entrust our families to the care of the Nelson team when their services are needed.
Josh Nelson, and his staff, have been amazingly helpful to our family. The ins and outs of nursing homes, the rules and regulations that govern Medicare and Medicaid are daunting and the folks at Nelson Elder Care Law have been informative, responsive, and above all, empathetic. I cannot emphasize enough how their service has taken a weight off of our shoulders especially during a world pandemic that has targeted nursing homes across our country. I highly recommend retaining Josh and his firm!
I had a simple legal question to them that I needed answered and they very helpful in giving me the information I needed. I highly recommend them and will reach out to them if I need more advice or assistance. Thank you for taking your time to just answer a couple of questions I had!