Stressful experiences and events in our daily lives have become a norm with most individuals.

Undergoing such stress could make the brain age more rapidly, a new study suggests.

Findings presented to a London conference suggest stress, divorce and family health have an impact on brain health.

Researchers at Wisconsin, US, surveyed data from 1,320 people, with an average age of 58 – who had detailed stressful experiences during their lives and had undergone a test of memory and thinking.

It was discovered that black Americans experienced over 60% more stressful events than non-hispanic whites during their lifetime.

Carol Routledge, director of research Alzheimer’s research UK, said the brains are complex organs that keep us ticking every day.

“Our brains are incredibly intricate organs that show enormous resilience to keep us ticking every day. Stressful life events can turn our lives upside down for a time and though most people can eventually return to an even keel, we can’t be sure how psychological stress could impact the workings of the brain over time.”

Doug Brown, director of research and development for the society, also added that prolonged stress can have an impact on our health.

“We know that prolonged stress can have an impact on our health, so it’s no surprise that this study indicates stressful life events may also affect our memory and thinking abilities later in life. However, it remains to be established whether these stressful life events can lead to an increased risk of dementia.”

The findings were published in Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2017.



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