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Complex jobs 'may protect memory'

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supergreysmoke

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BBC News - Complex jobs 'may protect memory'

Complex jobs 'may protect memory'

People with mentally taxing jobs, including lawyers and graphic designers, may end up having better memory in old age, research suggests.

A study of more than 1,000 Scottish 70-year-olds found that those who had had complex jobs scored better on memory and thinking tests.

One theory is a more stimulating environment helps build up a "cognitive reserve" to help buffer the brain against age-related decline,

The research was reported in Neurology.

The team, from Heriot-Watt University, in Edinburgh, is now planning more work to look at how lifestyle and work interact to affect memory loss.

Those taking part in the study took tests designed to assess memory, processing speed and general thinking ability, as well as filling in a questionnaire about their working life.

The analysis showed that those whose jobs had required complex skills in dealing with data or people, such as management and teaching, had better scores on memory and thinking tests than those who had done less mentally intense jobs such as factory workers, bookbinders, or carpet layers.

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SomersetScorpio

SomersetScorpio

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Makes sense to me.
I think a lot of cognitive functioning is a matter of "use it or lose it".
Having said that, my Granny was very clever and did crosswords and the like every day, and it didn't stop her Alzheimer's... not that that's really relevant, i'm guessing these tests/research were done on people without dementia.
 
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supergreysmoke

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Makes sense to me.
I think a lot of cognitive functioning is a matter of "use it or lose it".
Having said that, my Granny was very clever and did crosswords and the like every day, and it didn't stop her Alzheimer's... not that that's really relevant, i'm guessing these tests/research were done on people without dementia.
I recall reading crosswords don't protect against dementia. Guess it's got to be the right kind of exercise - creative thinking is limited with crosswords.
 
SomersetScorpio

SomersetScorpio

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I recall reading crosswords don't protect against dementia. Guess it's got to be the right kind of exercise - creative thinking is limited with crosswords.
True.
There are different types of mental skills and intellect, and yeah I don't think crosswords are that great when it comes to creative thinking.
 
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supergreysmoke

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I'm excellent at strategy. Win every chess game. Through the board and the other player never suspects it'll happen. And never do jigsaws but prefer to make patterns with them from my own imagination...what is good for memory most is novelty, a new angle. The meds in excess counter that, vow I'd rather top myself than be over medicated again....
 
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Topcat

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I suck at strategy, my brothers are much better, I find it really hard to see ahead. In life as well.
My job can be fast paced and needs quick short term prioritising, sometimes I'm really good at it, sometimes I am crap and end up really stressed and confused, other times am in the middle somewhere.
Am usually glad for lots of visual reminders of what I'm doing as my short term memory can be virtually non existent sometimes, lol.
 
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supergreysmoke

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Strategy is seeing options. It improves by having options. When they are not available through conventional channels then it is necessary to take a eccentric road.
 
M

mind_the_cones

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I really like doing Number Games and Su Doku's. But I absolutely suck at strategy games, even though I quite like them (apart from Chess). Have a total inability to look ahead at what's going to happen, only see things in the present. XCOM:Enemy Unknown/Within and Civilization are two of my favourite video games I've played. I also quite like Catan and Monopoly as board games.

My long-term memory is decent, but short-term is hopeless! I always make sure to right things down and/or give myself visual reminders. Otherwise, I'd forget my head if it wasn't screwed on.. Honestly, I can remember things from when I was 5 years old, but I forget things I did 5 minutes ago :(

It's all about finding things that keep your brain reasonably busy, but are also enjoyable. It's different for everyone :)

Matthew
 
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supergreysmoke

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Not everyone needs to see ahead and it is easy to get a reputation as a Cassandra when you are too good at it.
 
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Topcat

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Same here mind_the_cones, lol.
Can recall numbers and visual things very well too, almost like I take a snapshot and store it, can remember things from years ago like it was last week (except for stuff that's important to me and I feel I've lost it forever, it's mostly pointless facts, conversations and mundane memories. Oh also people. People from school who remember me but I have no idea who the hell they are, lol) but short term stuff am pants at.
I almost bought Catan last year as my nephew really enjoys it, looks good. Though another problem I have is I get bored very easily if things aren't moving forward fast enough.
 
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