Going to bed too early or sleeping too much can increase the risk of dementia
What time people go to bed and how long they sleep may affect their risk of developing dementia and cognitive decline, a new study suggests.
The results were published Wednesday in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
A team of researchers from China, Sweden and the UK found a 69% increased risk of dementia in people who slept more than eight hours, compared to those who slept between seven and eight hours, and the risk was two times higher for those who slept. more than eight hours people who slept before 9 PM against 10 PM or later.
Additionally, the findings suggest that “cognitive function should be monitored in older adults who report prolonged bedtimes and advanced sleep times, particularly those aged 60 to 74 and males,” the report said. study.
Future research “could help clarify whether a moderate reduction [in time spent in bed] and a delay in sleep pattern can slow cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia in older adults,” wrote the Dr. Rui Liu, from the Shandong Department of Neurology. Shandong University Provincial Hospital. Jinan, China, lead author of the study.
The study included about 2,000 older people in China who did not have dementia at baseline; 97 participants were diagnosed with dementia during an average follow-up period of 3.7 years.
The researchers pointed out that most studies on sleep and dementia have been conducted in almost exclusively white populations in North America and Europe, and have not focused on rural older people.
This is important because older adults living in rural parts of China, as compared to Western populations and city dwellers, “usually go to bed earlier, rise earlier, have poorer sleep and are more susceptible to dementia,” attributable partly to differences in socioeconomic status, culture, education and lifestyle, the study said.
To try to bridge the knowledge gap, the study targeted rural-dwelling, older adults, mostly low-income and with limited education, in western Shandong Province.
The scientists noted that sleep problems and cognitive decline are known to be linked to demographics: age, sex and education. And, they said, a well-established genetic risk factor for dementia has been associated with short sleep duration.
However, to date, population-based studies have produced mixed results on links between sleep problems and dementia, they said.
They acknowledged the limitations of their own study and said the results should be interpreted with caution, as sleep characteristics were self-reported, data on factors such as sleep apnea and sleep time were lacking, and follow-up was relatively short.