The New Brunswick Brain Health Initiative: Preventing Alzheimer’s by Lessening Modifiable Risk (NB-PALM)| MEKTU | NB-IRDT | UNB

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The New Brunswick Brain Health Initiative: Preventing Alzheimer’s by Lessening Modifiable Risk (NB-PALM)

Lead organization: UNB

Principle investigator(s): Chris A. McGibbon

About the project:

The issue

Drug treatments for dementia, to date, have not been as successful as had been hoped to cure/combat the disease. However, it appears possible to prevent the onset of symptoms of dementia by addressing the known risk factors that can lead to this disease.  Interventions that promote physical and cognitive activity are beginning to show evidence for slowing the progression to dementia.

The importance

Many of the known risk factors for dementia are also associated with other health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Halting or slowing the progression to dementia by even a few years could have significant impacts on improving the quality of life for older adults at risk of dementia. Reducing risk factors may also translate into less personal and overall health care costs associated with having dementia and also other health conditions

What makes this project different

This project will offer physical exercises and cognitive enhancing activities “virtually” to older adults at risk of developing dementia in their own home. With more older adults connected to computers and tablets this type of prevention strategy can be delivered in their own homes. This has not been done before and offers an opportunity to reach more people all across New Brunswick in both languages.  

Anticipated impacts

The research will benefit older adults and their caregivers by promoting accessibility to and awareness of strategies to enhance brain health. This will hopefully then reduce their risk for dementia and other health conditions resulting in healthier and happier people, communities and lower costs to the health care system.

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