Its known that losing the ability to smell may indicate brain diseases like Alzheimer’s Dementia or Parkinson’s Disease. Now researchers found that people with a bad smell test are twice likely to suffer from memory problems than others.
“The findings suggest that doing a smell test may help identify elderly, mentally normal people who are likely to progress to develop memory problems or, if they have these problems, to progress to Alzheimer’s dementia,” the lead author of the study said.
1,400 participants were included in the study. The smell test consisted of food-related and nonfood-related scents (banana, chocolate, cinnamon, gasoline, lemon, onion, paint thinner, pineapple, rose, soap, smoke and turpentine).
As similar results are known in case of Parkinson’s, these findings may lead to the conclusion that losing the sense of smell is an indicator for various degenerations of the brain.
“Physicians need to recognize that this may be a possible screening tool that can be used in the clinic,” said Dr. Robertson.