These Types Of Jobs Are Linked To A Lower Risk Of Dementia

Hate your job? Find yourself mentally drained at the end of the day? Apparently, while this may be difficult right now, it will benefit your brain much more in later life.

According to a new study, those who do mentally stimulating jobs such as teaching or working within the civil service, were 66% less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment and dementia in later life than those with less mentally challenging jobs.

The study, which was published in the journal Neurology, and involved researchers from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University, is thought to be the most comprehensive in this area as it studied people’s careers over 40 years.

Why your job impacts your chances of developing dementia

The study found that even the work you do in your 30s can determine how your brain functions in retirement. Jobs that are mentally challenging as opposed to physically taxing or routine in menial tasks, tend to provide the greatest benefits.

Researchers believe that this indicates that we can always change our direction in life and it’s never too late. Speaking to i, Trine Holt Edwin from Oslo University Hospital said: “Our research shows that it is never too late, or a waste of time, to start learning something new. All cognitively-demanding activities later in life contribute to strengthening one’s cognitive reserve.”

The researchers looked at the demands of a wide range of jobs and found that cognitive stimulation at work during the 30′s, 40′s, 50′s and 60′s was linked to a reduced risk of mild cognitive impairment which can be an early sign of disease that leads to dementia, but not always.

While researchers are keen to emphasise that this isn’t a definitive answer and that this just notes an ‘association’ between the two, they did remove factors that could skew the results and adjusted the data to account for income, lifestyle, age, sex and education.

Next time you are having a bad day at work, consider it an investment in your future brain-health.