Brain Health Study

Promoting the Health of Our LGBTQI Elders

RAINBOWS OF AGING – BRAIN HEALTH This landmark study examines brain health and dementia risk in sexual and gender minorities older adults, or specifically gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex (LGBTQI+) identifying individuals who are 60+ years old. By partnering with Kaiser Permanente and other national datasets, the Rainbows of Aging team will link comprehensive medical record and other data sources with information on sexual orientation and gender identity from thousands of people. This study will provide new information on brain health and dementia risk for the LGBTQI+ community for the first time.

MEMORY PROBLEMS MORE LIKELY TO BE REPORTED BY THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY Dr. Jason Flatt, Assistant Professor, now at the UNLV School of Public Health discusses recent research findings on preclinical Alzheimer’s disease for LGBTQ individuals with self-reported memory problems, including up to three times greater risk for future cognitive decline. He also discussed the needs for education of health-care professionals and LGBTQ seniors as well as ensuring cognitive and health screenings for LGBTQ community members risk at risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

Our findings suggest that being an active member of a supportive community and engaging in physical and mental exercise may be the best ways to combat dementia-related illnesses. Having a sense of community is especially important as well. For example, we know that LGBTQI+ seniors have often experienced depression in their lifetime. We recommend talking with a mental health or other healthcare provider to ensure your brain, mind and body remain healthy.

Dementia Prevalence in LGB Seniors

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