According to the WHO, one in three people will develop a neurological disease in their lifetime. Social contacts and mental activity are the key to a healthy brain, even in old age.
Geneva – Good social contacts and stimulating activities promote brain health, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). But not only that: governments must also create the conditions for physical health, a clean environment, safety, education, social networks and accessible and affordable health care.
This can prevent many neurological and mental diseases, according to a WHO brochure presented on Tuesday. The organization calls on countries to do more for the healthy development and maintenance of the brain.
Every third person develops a neurological disease
Every third person on earth develops a neurological disease in their lifetime. According to the WHO, these diseases are the second leading cause of death after heart disease.
There are many things people could do for their mental health, including lifelong advancement and learning new skills. According to a study, people with mentally stimulating jobs have a lower risk of developing dementia than people with less stimulating jobs. The former would have higher levels of certain proteins that interfere with the formation of connections between nerve cells in the brain.
Foreign languages, making music, reading and exchange
Speaking foreign languages, making music, reading and supporting one another intellectually are also good for brain health. People with a greater number of social relationships in adulthood had more extensive brain structures in the cerebral cortex than people who were lonelier, according to another study. “Social isolation and loneliness in older adulthood are associated with a higher risk of developing cognitive changes and dementia,” according to the WHO. dpa