"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Sleep well—and lower your risk of dementia and death.

In a recent blog post I discussed how sleep is helpful for memory function. But sleep isn't just good to your memory. It can actually reduce your risk of dementia and death. Although it has been known for a while that individuals with dementia are sometimes poor, Fragmented sleeptwo recent studies suggest that in the event you don't get enough sleep, your risk of dementia increases.

Get six to eight hours of sleep every night.

I A second studyResearchers from Europe (including France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, and Finland) examined data from nearly 8,000 participants from a separate study and located that sleeping six hours or less consistently at ages 50, 60, and 70 was related to It was for 30 years. Percentage increase in risk of dementia in comparison with normal sleep duration of seven hours. The average age of dementia diagnosis was 77 years. The study controlled for sociodemographic, behavioral, cardiometabolic, and mental health aspects, although most participants were white, higher educated, and healthier than the overall population. In addition, about half of the participants had their sleep duration objectively measured using a wearable accelerometer — a tool that tracks their sleep using body movements — that tracked the questionnaire data. Confirmed.

Insufficient sleep can result in dementia in midlife.

What's recent here is that insufficient sleep in midlife increases the chance of dementia. There are many reasons for poor sleep in middle age: shift work, insomnia, caregiving responsibilities, anxiety, and pressing deadlines, to call just a couple of. While not all of those are controllable, some are. For example, in the event you're currently only getting 4 to 5 hours of sleep because you’re employed late every night, it’s possible you’ll want to alter your habits, or risk developing dementia by the point you retire. Is!

This relationship between sleep in midlife and dementia in late life is essential not only from a medical perspective, but in addition from a scientific perspective. It has all the time been a chicken-and-egg problem when attempting to interpret the link between poor sleep and dementia. Was it really poor sleep that caused dementia, or simply early dementia symptoms causing poor sleep? By taking a look at individuals who were initially studied in midlife – some as young as 50 – we now have more confidence that poor sleep could also be related to future dementia at age 25 or more. May increase risk.

Flush your mind while sleeping.

Although it shouldn’t be fully understood why insufficient sleep increases your risk of dementia, one possible reason is expounded to the buildup of the Alzheimer's protein, beta-amyloid. Beta-amyloid is the protein that clusters and clumps together to form Alzheimer's plaques. No one is entirely sure what its normal function is, although there may be growing evidence of its involvement. Defense of the mind against invading microorganisms.

During the day, all of us make a few of this beta-amyloid protein within the brain. When we sleep, nevertheless, brain cells and their connections actually shrink. This shrinking creates extra space between brain cells, in order that beta-amyloid and other substances that accumulate in the course of the day can go through. Flowed away.

So the idea is that, in the event you don't get enough sleep, your brain won't have enough time to remove beta-amyloid and other substances. These substances then accumulate day after day, until they cause dementia.

excellent news

The excellent news is that you may reduce your risk of developing dementia by getting enough sleep. A study Researchers from Toronto and Chicago examined individuals who were at genetic risk of developing Alzheimer's. They found that higher sleep not only reduced the likelihood of developing clinical Alzheimer's disease, nevertheless it also reduced one other substance that accumulates within the brain in Alzheimer's disease.

The bottom line

Sleep shouldn’t be just an annoying interruption between necessary facets of our waking life. Just like eating right and exercising, sleep is totally essential for good mental health. These two recent studies show that the harmful effects of insufficient sleep can begin as early as age 50 (if not earlier), and may result in early dementia and death. But the excellent news is that you may reduce your risk of dementia by giving yourself just six to eight hours of sleep each night. Try to avoid sleeping pills, as they don't offer you the deep sleep you wish. If you’re having trouble sleeping, non-pharmacological approaches are best.