July News round-up

24 Jul 2014

Top stories this week: via – express.co.uk, bt.com, independent.co.uk

Prime Minister announces £100 million boost for dementia research

As the news that early onset dementia could be three times more common than first thought, the Prime Minister has earmarked £100 million for dementia research in partnership with Alzheimer’s Research UK.

The Alzheimer’s Society has said that some 17,000 people under 65 have early onset dementia and that it can effect even those in their 20s. Other charities have said that another 34,000 may have been misdiagnosed with menopause or depression instead of dementia.

The research could help delay dementia by five years and save the economy £21.2 billion by 2050.

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Helpful tips to boost your memory

Following the discovery of statistics showing that 40% of those with dementia kept quiet about their concerns, The Alzheimer’s Society has launched a campaign entitled ‘don’t bottle it up’ to encourage people to call the national dementia helpline for advice and assistance on 0300 222 11 22.

Although there isn’t a proven method of preventing dementia, there are ways to help minimise and delay it.

These include:

  • walking regularly during the week
  • to breath slowly and try to relax
  • learning languages
  • multi-tasking – which forces your brain to do more things at the same time
  • eating the right foods – especially those with omega-3 fatty acid such as mackerel, salmon, chicken, nuts and spinach.

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New blood test to help predict onset of Alzheimer’s

Following 10 years of research, scientists at King’s College and the University of Oxford have developed a blood test which can predict the onset of Alzheimer’s within 12 months for people who are experiencing problems with their memory.

With an 87% accuracy, the blood test, likely to cost between £100-300 has been highly acclaimed by scientists and could be ready within two years.

However, the lead researcher, Professor Simon Lovestone of University of Oxford said it was unlikely that GP’s would use the test until an actual cure for Alzheimer’s was available, saying that it is ‘grim’ and ‘horrible’ to make people wait 12 months to find out whether or not they have dementia.

Head of research at the Alzheimer’s Society, Dr James Pickett said that it would revolutionise dementia research if it was possible to detect dementia before the onset of its symptoms, but also warns that the research does not mean a blood test for dementia “is just around the corner.”

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