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Elderly people 'give past a rosier tint'

Elderly people 'give past a rosier tint'
19th December 2008

The good old days that many elderly people remember may not be all that brilliant, with new research looking at the role of memory in the older generations.

Scientists from Duke University in North Carolina conducted a study for the Psychological Science journal which found that while many people believe crime was lower, people were nicer and more respect was shown to elders in the past, bad memories may have simply been forgotten.

The study scanned the brains of a group of people in their 20s and another in their 70s as they looked at photos, with many of them showing things which were purposely disturbing.

It was found that elderly people had a stronger bond with emotions as well as their frontal cortex - which allows the ability to think in a more abstract way - hence helping them underwrite any unpleasant memories.

A recent study by North Carolina State University found that high blood pressure contributes to increased difficulty in thinking straight in elderly people.

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