A major question is addressed in the article “NZ-led study: Social isolation can age your brain faster.”

Is there an association with older brain age if social isolation from childhood to mid-adulthood occurs? A NZ-led study has looked more closely at how the related changes in the brain could be measured over someone’s entire life.

The study researched the impact of social isolation on brain health and was the first-of-its-kind. This issue was a big concern in NZ before COVID lockdowns put it under the spotlight. Many young people and older Kiwis reported feeling isolated in successive surveys.

Studies have linked little to no contact with others to poorer brain function whereas healthy social networking makes a positive difference by building up “cognitive” reserve in our brains.

The article provides key information on the results and a vital conclusion. The team used a trove of longitudinal information from the world-famous Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study (DMHDS) as a data source. This study appears on p.12 in Teens and Transition – A Parent Guide.”

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