Robin Williams’ Suicide Triggered by Type of Dementia?

A gossip website has attributed actor Robin Williams’ suicide to Lewy body dementia, a devastating disease that affects an estimated 1.4 million Americans, most of them men over age 60. Sources told TMZ that Williams’ doctors agree that the dementia was a “key factor” that drove him to suicide, though neither the diagnosis nor the doctors’ statements have been confirmed. >> Famous People We’ve Lost in 2014 Lewy body dementia is the second or third most common type of progressive dementia, according …

Retired NFL Players Settle Suit Over Traumatic Brain Injuries

There are more than 18,000 retired NFL players. Some time ago, more than 4,500 of these former players – a full quarter of them – sued the NFL over traumatic brain injuries that they claim caused dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and other conditions. On Aug. 28 the players settled with the NFL – ending any future claims – by agreeing to the league’s offer to pay $765 million to provide medical benefits and injury compensation for the retired players, fund medical and …

2 Cups of Coffee Daily May Cut Suicide Risk

Chalk up yet another health benefit to coffee: A new study indicates that drinking two to four cups a day may lower suicide risk — by half! Yes, it seems amazing, but Harvard School of Public Health researchers found that people who drank two to three cups of caffeinated coffee daily had a 45 percent lower chance of taking their own life, while those who drank more than four cups of coffee daily had a 53 percent lower risk when …

Should Doctors Ask If You Own a Gun?

No one questions when a doctor asks if an older, cognitively impaired patient is still driving, and urges family members to take away the car keys for the safety of the patient and everyone else. So why is it any different for a doctor to ask if a patient with similar problems has guns at home that could endanger him or others? There is no difference — it’s simply the doctor’s role in contributing to patient and public safety, argues …

Age Divide Narrows on Hot-Button Social Issues

Older Americans are moving closer to younger people in their views on a wide range of moral and cultural issues, including many at the center of contentious legal and legislative battles, a new Gallup report shows. “Americans’ fundamental views on several issues that define the nation’s culture have changed in important ways since the start of the last decade,” Joy Wilke and Lydia Saad of Gallup write. “Gallup trends by age show that (in every case) increasing acceptance of several matters …

5 Ways to Deal With Surging Boomer Suicides

The image would be comic if it wasn’t so sad. Feeling hopeless and alone years ago, I remember holding a belt and looking at my shower curtain rod, wondering if it would hold my weight. I couldn’t have been too serious about harming myself with such a flimsy plan. That picture popped into my head last week when I heard the news from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that more people now die by suicide than in …