Too much TV could rise the risk of Alzheimer's, according to one study....

Started by

In my local newspaper, the Washington Post, there was an article that said too much TV could rise the risk of Alzheimer's, according to one study.

They followed 25 people, and those who were couch potatoes had more issues with memory than those who were active.

I really believe that. I have been semi-grounded for the past two month due to an injury and I noticed I just can't think as clearly as I did before. Thank goodness I am able to go to the office in the morning, otherwise my mind would be really like oatmeal. Now I am overthinking all of this, and I need to stop doing that :P


I wonder if it is actually the tv causing dementia or the lack of exercise and, social interaction that may go along with being glued to the tv excessively?
Yeah, I would think that being online would be even worse.
My mom all she wants to do is sit in front of the TV and I don't like TV at all. My mom has dementia and other major health issues. My mom has been immobile for years she is watching TV from morning until night.
I worry about today's youth who you rarely see outdoors playing. My gosh, when I was a kid we were up and out at the crack of dawn, came home for lunch, back out for the afternoon, home for supper, back out until the street lights came on.

We mowed our parent's lawn using a push mower, and shoveled snow using a regular shovel. We walked everywhere. I remember walking to school over a mile each way.... yep, uphill both ways :) My Dad rode horseback all 12 years, I thought that was pretty cool.

Kids became glued to 500 TV channels [we grew up with 3 or 4, if any]... and now handheld computer devices, but at least in most cases they are communicating with others

Since TV wasn't all that common in everyone's living room until the late 1950's, I guess dementia in our elders must be triggered by something else.... aging brain? Yet my Mom is 97 and has no memory issue, not even age related memory issue. Dad who is 93 I notice is having some short term memory.
There are a lot of theories on the causes of dementia. I think we are seeing it more now because people are just living so long. Years ago it was the norm to pass in your 70's or 80's, now it is common to see people in their 90's and increasingly centenarians. And many that do reach a great age have survived cancer, heart disease, stroke and a multitude of other problems that probably contribute to cognitive decline.
As for the kids not playing outside, that is partly caused by helicopter parents. I followed a debate once where people were accusing a parent of neglect for letting their 3 year old play outside alone in their own fenced backyard. And then we wonder why we can't get our 30 year olds to leave the nest ;P
Glad I was raised back when we could be "free range" kids :)

I believe the helicoptering started when 24-hour news came on the horizon. The news stations kept repeating the same news story every hour, and depending on how often one turned on the news, you'd think there were a dozen of the same crime happening instead of that one crime. Then the next day, an update on that same crime.... one would think oh my gosh, it happened again.
Sunnygirl, I've heard on a few stations (PBS perhaps) that there are now clinics for people with Internet addiction.

I think that someone who might develop Alzheimers from watching excessive amounts of tv probably has very few interests and/or problem solving skills, doesn't exercise his or her brain, and has a vegetative personality. Going along with that might be poor food choices, unhealthy diet including too much junk food, no exercise, no brain stimulation, no goals, no motivation.

Although I think there might be merit to the theory, a study of 25 people isn't really enough to form a conclusion. The study would need to be much larger, and over a wide demographic range.

But it is a start and could lead to more studies on the correlation between heavy tv watching and dementia.

Personally I also think widespread chemical use, especially in agriculture, may also be a factor. We've also segued into much heavier use of electronics, battery operated devices, and a more unnatural lifestyle than our parents.
There is intensive research about dementia and how our brains work and don't work all over the world.

Here is what causes dementia: We Don't Know.

Watching less television and being more active is probably a good healthy thing for all of us. Will it decrease our risk of getting dementia? We Don't Know.

One study involving 25 people? Does that prove, or even suggest something? We Don't Know.

Keep the conversation going (or start a new one)

Please enter your Comment

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support