The ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research (CEPAR) led by UNSW, in collaboration with Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA), has undertaken extensive research on cognitive ageing trends in Australia, and is highlighting ways that society can minimise the social burden of cognitive decline and dementia. The research team, led by ARC Australian Laureate Fellow, Scientia Professor Kaarin Anstey, looked at recent research from around Australia and the world, to develop a research brief for use by policy makers, journalists, health care providers, industry practitioners, and all those who want an insight into the trends in cognitive ageing and dementia in Australia. Dementia is the leading cause of disability among Australians over 65 and the second leading cause of death in Australia. In 2016, the direct costs alone of dementia were close to $9 billion, with a predicted increase to $12 billion by 2025. One of the findings highlighted by the research is that the knowledge base around the cause of dementia in the senior community varies greatly, raising the need for in-depth dementia awareness workshops and community involvement. Early retirement has been found to be detrimental to cognitive function and can increase the risk of dementia, suggesting that it is in society’s best interests to keep older people engaged in different activities, including work. The research also highlights how even mild cognitive limitations and changes in processing speed or acquisition of new knowledge will have significant impacts on how Australians make financial decisions. Exploring the whole spectrum of cognitive ageing and its impacts on individuals, society and the economy, the CEPAR research highlights seven key modifiable lifestyle factors which are attributed to dementia; the rising numbers of people with dementia; and the increasing cost to families, carers, and the economy. EXPLORING COGNITIVE AGEING AND ITS IMPACTS ON INDIVIDUALS
THE RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS THE PREVALENCE OF DEMENTIA IN AUSTRALIA, WHICH DOUBLES EVERY FIVE YEARS BETWEEN AGES 70 AND 84, AND HOW OUR AGEING POPULATION TRENDS WILL RESULT IN GREATER NUMBERS OF PEOPLE WITH DEMENTIA.
IMPROVING HEALTH AND WELL-BEING
Made with FlippingBook - Online magazine maker