In people between the ages of 50 and 70, not getting enough sleep may increase the risk of developing dementia

For years, we have been discussing the extent to which our sleep behavior affects cognitive decline and processes of cognitive change. A current and comprehensive study from Great Britain has now found that poor sleep between the ages of 50 and 70 carries an increased risk of developing dementia. FITBOOK displays the most important details about the study.

Changes in sleep patterns are common in people with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. Scientists believe this is due to an imbalance in the sleep-wake cycle due to pathophysiological processes in the brain. In addition to sleep disorders, there is increasing research interest in the relationship between sleep duration and dementia. Short and long sleep periods can be loud Supervisory studies It may be associated with an increased risk of cognitive decline and dementia. However, many of them are based on study periods of less than 10 years. A recent study by an international research team expanded this study and found a clear relationship between poor sleep and an increased risk of developing dementia.

Course of study

Nearly 8,000 healthy people from Great Britain have participated in the study over a 25-year period, and its results are now inNature Communications“It has been published. At the start of the study between 1985 and 1988, they were all 50 years old. During the course of the study, study participants were asked six times about their sleep behavior and, in particular, how long they slept.

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Factors affecting sleep behavior and duration were examined in detail by the research team. These included, for example, the study participants’ physical activity and diet, smoking behavior and alcohol consumption. Also pre-existing conditions such as high blood pressure And the DiabetesThe educational and living conditions were also recorded.

Additionally, people with mental illness – such as B. Depression, a proven risk factor for developing sleep disorders – is divided into separate groups. This ensures that sleep behavior crystallizes in this way and can be evaluated without distorting factors. Test subjects were divided into three different groups according to their sleep behavior and examined using questionnaires over the course of the study.

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Sleeping less than six hours increased the risk of developing dementia by 30 percent

At the end of the study, 521 of the 7959 study participants had dementia with a mean age of 77 years. It was found that those who reported an average regular sleep of six hours or less had a 30 percent higher risk of developing dementia over the next three decades. No significant difference was found between men and women. Another important finding is that the link between poor sleep and an increased risk of dementia is not due to mental health.

The often discussed chicken and egg problem, whether lack of sleep is a cause of dementia or a symptom of disease that appears later, can be re-examined based on the results of the study. Symptoms are not likely to appear very early – roughly 30 years before the disease develops, according to the doctor. Kristin Yaffe, professor of neurology and psychiatry at the University of California, in a conversation withThe New York TimesFrom this, Yaffe, who was not involved in the study, concluded that lack of sleep could be classified as a risk factor for the disease.

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Dr. Eric Mosick, a neurologist at the University of Washington’s Center for Biorhythms and Sleep, confirms this hypothesis to The New York Times. Given the relatively young age of the subjects interviewed at the start of the study, the chance is high that no pathological processes would take place in the brain at this point of time.

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Critical classification of the study

According to experts, there may be inaccuracies in analyzing data due to participants’ self-reports *. An objective comparison between the reports and actual sleep behavior was made with the help of measurement methods. However, this was done too late, only once with only half of the participants.

Another point of criticism is the choice of the study participants themselves. Due to their uniform ancestry, higher education and above average health status, these cannot be considered representatives of the entire British population.

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