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Howard G. Smith, M.D. is a former radio medical editor and talk show host in the Boston Metro area.  His "Medical Minute" of health and wellness news and commentary was a regular weekday feature on WBZ-AM, WRKO-AM, and WMRE-AM.   His popular two-way talk show, Dr. Howard Smith OnCall, was regularly heard Sunday morning and middays on WBZ.

Trained at Harvard Medical School and a long-time faculty member at Boston Children’s Hospital, he practiced Pediatric Otolaryngology for 40 years in Boston, Southern California, and in central Connecticut.

If you have questions or suggestions about this content, please email the doctor at or leave him a message at 516-778-8864.  His website is:

Please note that the news, views, commentary, and opinions that Dr. Smith provides are for informational purposes only.  Any changes that you or members of your family contemplate making to lifestyle, diet, medications, or medical therapy should always be discussed beforehand with personal physicians who have been supervising your care.

Aug 8, 2019



Frequent contact with friends helps 50 and 60 somethings avoid the scourge of later dementia. A team from University College London draws that conclusion after tracking more than 10,000 subjects over a 32 year period.


The participants documented the number and frequency of their social contacts via interviews.  Their mental status was captured via cognitive testing.


Daily social contacts were particularly valuable for those in their 60s with a significant 12% drop in dementia incidence.  The same trend held for those in their 50s and 70s with the numbers failing to reach statistical significance.  


We can now add a card game a day or a meal with friends a day to that proverbial apple if you want to keep the doctor far away!


Andrew Sommerlad, Séverine Sabia, Archana Singh-Manoux, Glyn Lewis, Gill Livingston. Association of social contact with dementia and cognition: 28-year follow-up of the Whitehall II cohort study. PLOS Medicine, 2019; 16 (8): e1002862 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1002862


#Socializing #dementia #middle age