International Journal of Aging Research

  • Social prescription for those living with dementia; does MedTech have a role to play?

    Ageing is the major risk factor for dementia and nearly every country has seen its life expectancy rise from the beginning of the 21st century. Remaining socially connected has positive health and social implications and may be even more significant for marginalized group of people like those living with dementia. If appropriately used, social prescriptions can help deliver value-based social engagement and primary care by maximising the utilisation of resources and addressing social determinants of health, decreasing dependency on the biomedical model and thus providing a way for health care systems to deal with social determinants of health. More frequently, however, those seeking access to these programmes do not tend to do so simply due to lack of understanding and knowledge of the availability of such services. So, provision of social activities involves more than developing a program and hoping people will attend, and considering the particular situations of those living with dementia as marginalised group of people, and taking into account that there is no treatment for dementia, societies need to move toward social prescription, integrating appropriate MedTech support- targeting on those living with dementia- into such programs.

  • Exergaming improves functional fitness in MCI patients. Does the APOE genotype moderate the outcome?

    Objectives: Mild cognitive impairment could be defined as the condition between healthy aging and dementia. MCI patients seem to retain the neuroplasticity to benefit from Physical Exercise (PE) interventions delaying the progression to dementia. The present study investigates the impact of PE via “Exergaming” on the functional fitness of MCI adults, depending on the presence of the APOEɛ4 allele. Methods: 159 MCI participants were recruited. They were separated to two groups (performing PE or not). The Fullerton Functional Test was used as a primary outcome measure in two-time points (prior to and after PE). Results: The Active group showed more considerable improvement compared to the Passive group in all Fullerton components despite the presence of APOEε4. Discussion: ΡΕ via exergaming has a beneficial functional effect in MCI patients, whether carrying the APOEɛ4 allele or not.

  • Human Rights Violation of the Elderly People in Bangladesh: Do They Enjoy Basic Needs?

    Basic needs are the fundamental human rights recognized by national and international law. This study is an attempt to reveal the picture of human rights violations of the elderly people in Bangladesh focusing particularly on the deprivation of the basic needs of the aged people. In this study, data have been collected from both primary and secondary sources. It reviews the right to basic needs, such as adequate food, clothes, shelter, healthcare, and education. As a human being, everybody deserves these basic needs as fundamental human rights and it is a fundamental responsibility of the state to secure these rights according to the constitution of Bangladesh, Article 15(a). But the study found that these basic rights are not implemented properly in the case of elderly people of the study area. Lacks of moral education and humanity have been identified as mainly responsible hindrances in this sphere. Corruption and poverty are also strong impediments in this regard. The paper proposes some workable suggestions. The government, responsible institutions, and concerned families should come forward to ensure proper education, to ensure proper and sound socialization with native culture, and to raise far-reaching consciousness regarding the welfare of elderly people.

  • Sharing Stories as Legacy: What Matters to Older Adults?

    Objectives: Legacy allows individuals to make meaning of their lives by passing on their experiences and beliefs to younger people and influencing their perspectives, perceptions, and actions. This mixed-methods study investigated: (1) What is important for older adults to share as legacy with families, friends and others, based on the types and features of their digital stories ? and (2) How do older adults’ digital stories affect story viewers? Methods: One hundred adults aged between 55 and 95 years participated in ten-week Elder’s Digital Storytelling courses and created short digital stories. Using the content analysis approach, the story transcripts were thematically analyzed and iteratively coded by three researchers and the results were quantified. A diverse group of 60 viewers at a public event provided their reactions to the digital stories. Results: The findings revealed that character, place, and family were chosen as the primary types by the older adults for their legacy digital stories. Accomplishment and career/school were the next most prominent story types. Moreover, these digital stories appeared to have a powerful impact on the viewers. Discussion: A digital story is a powerful artifact to communicate an older person’s legacy because it is based on familiar forms of communication, such as speech and photographs. The major legacy themes chosen by the older adults align with the findings of the research literature. The feedback from the viewers of the digital stories reflects these as a source of life wisdom and legacy for younger generations. Funding details: This work was supported by the AGE-WELL National Centre of Excellence (AW CRP 2015-WP4.3).

  • Older Adult Perspectives towards Health Literacy and Knowledge of Chronic Diseases in Nepal: A case study

    Background: The individual level of health literacy directly affects the health outcomes of any people. Older adult people are more vulnerable to chronic diseases than other groups of people. Also they have low health literacy and poor understanding of diseases than any other age group of people. Aim: This study aim is to explore older adult perspectives towards health literacy and knowledge of chronic diseases. Methods: The study was taken during December 2019 in the Budhanilkantha Municipality of Kathmandu district of Nepal. Semi-structured interview was conducted in four older adult participants with chronic diseases. It included health knowledge, level of understanding of chronic disease conditions, and the use of health services. Inductive analysis was followed for the patterns, themes, and categories of analysis to emerge. Results: Health literacy and knowledge of chronic diseases, health belief system, and experience of health problems were the emerging themes included here. The study results finds that lack of disease knowledge, low health literacy, health belief system, socio-economic, and cultural factors were influencing factors to chronic diseases among older adults. Participants had a minor knowledge of chronic diseases; they had lack in knowledge regarding their own chronic diseases. Conclusion: Health literacy is an important factor of understanding, accessing and utilizing health knowledge and health services. It is most important that the health literacy of the people is necessary to improve for positive health and gaining the knowledge of chronic diseases. To overcome the chronic health problems it is most important to improve the health knowledge, understanding of chronic diseases, and literacy level to the older adult people.

  • Psychosocial support for families of persons with dementia through home based care programme from a developing country: Process of intervention development and pilot testing

    In India, person with dementia continue to live with their families all through their illness period. It is common in India that because of the family relationships and cultural values the caregiving process is a joint effort made by the adult members in the family. Thus understanding the psychosocial issues of the caregivers of persons with dementia in the Indian context and providing appropriate psychosocial support for the caregivers is essential in the holistic approach for the care for persons with dementia.The current paper shares the process of development of psychosocial intervention for the families of persons with dementia and findings from the pilot study in urban Bangalore. The findings were helpful in systematically developing the content for the proposed homebased care programme for caregivers of persons with dementia. The pilot results show that the psychosocial support through home based programme for the family caregivers of persons with dementia is feasible and effective.

  • Alzheimer’s Disease & Dementia-From Pathophysiology To Clinic

    Dementia is a syndrome that occurs due to the difficulty of a patient in doing his cognitive and instrumental activities of daily life with the same performance as before, bringing him losses. This syndrome is caused by numerous primary and secondary etiologies. The most common primary cause of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease (AD), which reaches almost 50% of dementia cases. The DA it consists of biological fragments of the amyloid precursor protein that are deposited in the brain 10 years or more, before the first symptoms appear. The period before the onset of symptoms is called the preclinical stage. The transition between the silence of symptoms and their appearance, usually due to memory loss for recent events, is known as the prodromal phase. Continuing the pathophysiological process, the stage of mild dementia takes place, when the patient has one more cognitive component associated with memory loss; follows the moderate, severe, profound and terminal phase of dementia.

  • Dementia syndromes and health psychology

    The aging process is considered a worldwide phenomenon, and it is observed that the population has aged, where there is an inversion in the age pyramid resulting from the increase in life expectancy. This phenomenon has been investigated by several national and international studies. As results, there are some justifications that are being cited. Among these, are the presence of some demographic factors such as a reduction in fertilit, fecundity and mortality rate over the years, in addition, we highlight the technological advances in health and improvement in the quality of life of individuals1,2. Consequently, with the presence of these influencing factors, some studies highlight an epidemiological transition, where infectious diseases are being replaced by chronic-degenerative, as the main cause of morbidity and mortality, giving emphasis on dementia syndromes . In addition of aging, are expected physical, psychological and social changes that lead to changes in the life of each elderly. At this stage of life, in addition to chronic conditions, the decline in cognitive functions, such as changes in memory, speed of reasoning, and attention seem to take on a broader dimension. Thus, with the decline of these and other functions, several difficulties can be observed in the execution of activities of daily living of the elderly, implying difficulties in their “coming and going”, that is, in their autonomy and self-care.

  • Smokeless Tobacco dependence and cessation measures in India

    India being the largest smokeless tobacco (SLT) producer and consumer in the South East Asia Region (SEAR) entitled with a range of products. SLT consumption is very common because it is associated with socio-economic and cultural perspectives in the India. After the implementation of the first treaty of the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO-FCTC), public health standards were reaffirmed and improvised through successful implementation of articles since 2007 as reported in the global progress factsheet. Many measures have been implemented for achieving the success of WHO-FCTC in India and to control the huge disease burden induced by tobacco use. The objective of the present study was to understand and explore the factors involved in the SLT demand reduction by revealing the dependence and cessation implementation in India in the context of strategies and policies. For this study, we searched for SLT dependence and SLT cessation literature survey in PubMed and obtained 102 literatures consisting of studies and reviews, which were further scrutinized by excluding the reviews, studies conducted abroad and studies conducted within the last 5 years (after 2015). No statistical significance was observed in comparison of National to International SLT dependence and an attempt to quit SLT following the tenure of a year. This is in-line with GATS-2 and international data. We have also discussed a diverse approach in the control of SLT at different levels-such as SLT users, healthcare professional, policy advocates supplier, labeling, legal policies, and educating at various platforms. Effective strategies for the cessation of SLT is mandatory with proper guidance for the manufacturer, users and sellers in controlling SLT products.

  • The Elderly, Carriers of Dementia Syndromes and Dental Care

    The demographic and epidemiological transition resulting from declining birth rates, increased economically active population, decreased infectious diseases and increased chronic degenerative diseases produce a population scenario with a high number of elderly individuals, prone to developing dementia, whose prevalence is directly related to increasing age. Dementia is progressive and characterized by the loss of self-care ability and ability to perform activities of daily living, including the difficulty to perform oral hygiene and accept dental treatment, thus resulting in decreased oral health. Thus, it is necessary to know and think about oral care to increase the quality of life of this population through actions of health promotion, prevention and recovery with the accomplishment of home and hospital dental procedures, besides the traditional service, at a dental office.