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    Having a good listener improves your brain health



    Summary: Researchers find having someone to listen to you when you need to talk is associated with greater cognitive resilience

    Source: NYU Langone Health.

    A new study finds that supportive social interactions in adulthood are important for your ability to repel cognitive decline despite aging of the brain or neuropathological transformations such as those present in Alzheimer’s disease.

    Researchers noticed that simply having someone available most or all of the time whom you can trust on to listen to you when you need to talk is linked with higher cognitive resilience (the brain’s ability to function better than expected for the factors such as physical aging or disease-related changes in the brain), which many neurologists believe can be enhanced by taking part in mentally stimulating activities, physical exercise, and positive social interactions.

    The Framingham Heart Study (FHS), one of the longest running and most closely observed community-based cohorts in the U.S. was used by the researchers for the study. They looked at 2,171 participants, with an average age of 63. The participants reported about the availability of supportive social interactions including good listeners, good advice, care, love and affection, enough contact with people they’re close with, and emotional support.

    The study participants’ cognitive resilience was calculated by the relative effect of total cerebral brain volume on global cognition, using MRI scans and neuropsychological examinations. Lower brain volumes seems to be associated with lower cognitive function.

    Researchers also observed that further study of individual social interactions can increase the understanding of the biological mechanisms that connects psychosocial factors to brain health.

    Published: NYU Langone Health.

    Contact: Joel Salinas, NYU Langone Health.

    Details: Image source IStock


    Hi, I’m Aarti, My Psychoanalytical approach towards my clients is to empower them to better their lives through improving their relationship with themselves. I believe shame and guilt is a common barrier to change. I aim to guide my clients through re authoring their narratives where shame, guilt, and other problems have less power and take up less space.

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