The Type of Job You Have May Impact Your Memory and Thinking Skills Later in Life

A new study finds people with jobs that are cognitively stimulating are much less likely to be diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment after the age of 70.

Having a job that stimulates your brain may protect your memory and thinking power later in life.

In a new study, people whose work was mentally challenging from their 30s to their 60s had a much lower risk of mild cognitive impairment after the age of 70.

The study looked at 7,000 people and 305 occupations in Norway. Researchers measured the demand of manual, cognitive, analytical and interpersonal tasks required for each job and had participants complete memory and thinking tests after the age of 70.

42% of participants in jobs with the lowest cognitive demands were diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment compared to 27% of those in jobs with the highest cognitive demands.

The most common job for the group with the highest cognitive demands was teaching.

One researcher says, “These results indicate that both education and doing work that challenges your brain during your career play a crucial role in lowering the risk of cognitive impairment later in life.”

She says future research should help determine which tasks are most beneficial for maintaining memory and thinking skills.

Source: Neurology