Start Date

16-11-2018 9:30 AM

End Date

16-11-2018 11:30 AM

Description

Background: Dementia is the largest cause of dependency and disability in older adults, affecting nearly 50 million people worldwide with about 10 million new cases every year. Presently, there are no cures for dementia. Consequently, a growing body of evidence suggests that bilingualism may delay the onset of clinical dementia symptoms by several years.

Objectives: The purpose of this review is to summarize and analyze current evidence from studies that examined how bilingualism delays the onset of dementia. Evidence is reviewed suggesting that bilingualism may delay the dementia symptoms due to an increase in cognitive reserve, which refers to an improved ability to modify the brain’s neuron connections in order to mitigate damage to the brain caused by dementia. Furthermore, research was reviewed to determine if different study methods affect the overall clinical findings and conclusions.

Method: This integrative literature review was conducted using key terms “dementia, Alzheimer disease, cognitive impairment, bilingualism, and multilingualism” to search the literature between 2013 and 2018. A total of six studies were used in this review.

Results: Among the various studies reviewed, all but one concluded that bilingualism does delay the onset of dementia, but at different amounts of delay. Most studies stated that the protective effects of bilingualism against developing symptoms of dementia involve the lifelong use of two or more languages contributing to cognitive reserve.

Conclusion: Despite the limitations and some conflicting data, there is convincing evidence to suggest that bilingualism does delay the onset of dementia by increasing cognitive reserve. Having a better understanding of how life variables and factors, such as bilingualism, delay the onset of dementia could help patients learn how to enhance the possibilities of maintaining independence in their daily life for a longer period of time.

Share

COinS
 
Nov 16th, 9:30 AM Nov 16th, 11:30 AM

Examining Delayed Onset of Dementia in the Bilingual Geriatric Population

Background: Dementia is the largest cause of dependency and disability in older adults, affecting nearly 50 million people worldwide with about 10 million new cases every year. Presently, there are no cures for dementia. Consequently, a growing body of evidence suggests that bilingualism may delay the onset of clinical dementia symptoms by several years.

Objectives: The purpose of this review is to summarize and analyze current evidence from studies that examined how bilingualism delays the onset of dementia. Evidence is reviewed suggesting that bilingualism may delay the dementia symptoms due to an increase in cognitive reserve, which refers to an improved ability to modify the brain’s neuron connections in order to mitigate damage to the brain caused by dementia. Furthermore, research was reviewed to determine if different study methods affect the overall clinical findings and conclusions.

Method: This integrative literature review was conducted using key terms “dementia, Alzheimer disease, cognitive impairment, bilingualism, and multilingualism” to search the literature between 2013 and 2018. A total of six studies were used in this review.

Results: Among the various studies reviewed, all but one concluded that bilingualism does delay the onset of dementia, but at different amounts of delay. Most studies stated that the protective effects of bilingualism against developing symptoms of dementia involve the lifelong use of two or more languages contributing to cognitive reserve.

Conclusion: Despite the limitations and some conflicting data, there is convincing evidence to suggest that bilingualism does delay the onset of dementia by increasing cognitive reserve. Having a better understanding of how life variables and factors, such as bilingualism, delay the onset of dementia could help patients learn how to enhance the possibilities of maintaining independence in their daily life for a longer period of time.

 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.