Dementia: 9 million elderly Indians have dementia: Study | India News – Times of India

MUMBAI: A pan-India study has found that dementia is prevalent among an estimated 7. 4% of the country’s elderly people, which means 8. 8 million individuals aged 60 years and older suffer from the debilitating ailment that affects memory and cognitive function.
This figure is notably higher than previous estimates, which had put the prevalence at 3.7 million in 2010 and predicted it would double by 2030. However, the new findings suggest that the number has doubled a decade earlier, underscoring the pressing need for better care and support for those living with this condition.

Playing video games cause no harm to cognitive abilities: Study

The prevalence of dementia in J&K is the highest in the country at 11%. While most of the samples were collected from Kashmir, experts believe there is scope for more detailed study to gauge if the region’s decades-long political turbulence had a role. In contrast, Delhi has shown the lowest prevalence at 4.5%, with neighbouring Haryana having a prevalence of 5.8%. Other states with worrying prevalence include Odisha and West Bengal at 9.9% and 9.2%, respectively. Maharashtra has also been identified as one of 11 states where dementia prevalence is higher than the national average.
The study, led by researchers from University of Southern California and AIIMS-Delhi, in collaboration with 18 other institutes, including Mumbai’s JJ Hospital, found wide variations in the presence of dementia among different states, gender, geographical locations. It was published in the Alzheimer’s & dementia: the journal of the Alzheimer’s Association in January.

Playing video games cause no harm to cognitive abilities: Study

Playing video games cause no harm to cognitive abilities: Study

“In 2010, the Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Society of India estimated that 3.7 million Indians had dementia and projected that this number would double by 2030.5 Our findings suggest this might have been an underestimate. The number doubled a decade earlier, reaching 8.8 million in 2019. Therefore, the need to scale up policies to prevent and manage dementia in India is urgent,” the researchers noted, adding they found significant heterogeneity across states. “This means that the burden of dementia cases is unevenly distributed across states and requires different levels of local planning and support.”
Dementia was found to be almost double among women (9%) than men (5. 8%), which experts have often linked with differences in education and early life nutrition. Prevalence was also higher in rural areas at 8. 4% than in urban areas (5. 3%), underlining the urgent need to scale up diagnosis in rural health facilities.
Further, lower education was associated with a greater risk of dementia. The estimated prevalence was 10% in those with no education at all, compared to 4. 5% in those who had primary level education and 1. 5% in those who went to Class VIII and above.
“Different levels of education across states could also contribute to cross-state differences in various dementia risk factors, like under-nutrition and exposure to indoor air pollution,” the researchers noted, calling for more localised policies to tackle the disorder.
“This is the largest cognitive ageing study in the world where globally-used scientific tools have been deployed to show that dementia affects nearly all regions, and that India needs to double down on empowering all health systems to tackle it,” said Dr Aparajit Ballav Dey, former project lead with the department of geriatric medicine at AIIMS-Delhi.

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