Prolonged TV viewing can cause memory problems in the elderly
The study was conducted on a group of 3662 osób over 50 years of age. It turned out that the memory of subjects whoóThose who often watch TV, is worse even twice in cfówn comparison with people whoóre spending less time in front of the screen. In order to have better results, the scientists studied the same group of people twiceób from England using memory tests. The first survey took place six years ago, the second repeatedóthrown recently.
The researchers tested how well the test subjects would do at remembering 10 common wordsów. ParticipantóThe study also asked people to list as many words as possible in one minuteów pertaining to a particular subject.
The results of the study were published in the journal „Scientific Reports”.
The researchers also monitored the activity of the TV for several yearsóin those belonging to osób participating in the experiment. Other factors were also taken into account, whichóre could affect memory, such as a sedentary lifestyle, playing sports or exercising regularly osób of those taking part in the study.
The results of the analysis indicate that memory loss in osób, które watched TV less than three hours a day averaged 4-5 percent of. In turn, in osób, whichóre watched television more often the average loss was 8 to 10 percent. Researchers at University College in London speculate that watching TV may cause a kind of stress affecting memory in the osób elders.
– Older people enjoy watching soap operas. This can be stressful for them as they identify with their characters – mówi prof. Andrew Steptoe, który took part in the experiment.
The study showed róalso found that people who like to watch TV are less likely to engage in activities that help maintain a good memory, such as reading, playing video games, or browsing the Internet.
– Although watching TV has positive effects, including relaxation or education, research indicates that people over 50 should keep other activities in mind – mówi Dr. Daisy Fancourt of the UCL Institute of Epidemiology. The study’s authors believe that TV viewing may be one factor in theów that increase the risk of dementia, but more research is needed to confirm this.
– We still know very little. For example, whether memory is affected by what we watch, or at least by doing it alone or with someone else. It is also unclear whether changing behavior would improve memory – mówi prof. Dame Til Wykes of King's College London. – Our research should make people think more about the time they spend watching TV. Further experiments are needed – adds.
Scientists appeal to waspsób the elderly and their caregiverów o reconsider the resultóin their study.