A new survey claims that sleeping more than nine hours per night might be a sign of early dementia. An extended amount of sleeping was proved to indicate the first sign of cognitive decline in seniors. This connection is especially accentuated for those with decreased levels of education. The report was developed by the Framingham Heart Study.
It demonstrated that elderly participants who were used to sleep more than nine hours per night had double chances of developing dementia sometime during the next ten years. Moreover, those who enjoyed sleeping too much had lower brain volume. The new study made use of data coming from 2,500 older women and men. It was recently published online in Neurology.
Participants who did not obtain a high school degree when younger and slept over nine hours per night proved to have six times the risk of suffering from dementia in the next ten years compared to those participants who slept less than nine hours. Sudha Seshadri, MD, researchers at the Boston University School of Medicine Alzheimer’s Disease Center together with her colleagues, managed to establish that extensive sleep period may trigger an early neurodegeneration.
Matthew Pase, Ph.D., researchers at Boston University and another co-author of the survey, noted that previous studies which also analyzed whether there is a connection between self-indicated sleep period and a high dementia risk in seniors have proved that there exist mixed results. Conversely, some of these findings suggested that sleeping for shorter periods of time may trigger dementia later in life. Other surveys indicated that long-duration sleep is connected with a significant risk of dementia.
The new analysis based on the data from the Framingham Heart Study is the first one which spanned two different generations of participants who were interviewed about their sleeping patterns twice during the development of the survey. Seniors were asked about their amount of sleep about 13 years apart. Researchers did not spot anything which could indicate a high risk of dementia in those who claimed to be excessive sleepers at both time points.
Nevertheless, scientists revealed that those who had reported having an extensive sleep duration only during the second part of the study were the ones who had an increased risk of developing dementia.
Image source: pixabay