Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health
Elderly Men Reporting Sleep Problems at Higher Risk
for Alzheimer's Disease
The later age the self-reported sleep disturbance
was found the higher the risk was for developing Alzheimer's disease
Oct. 28, 2014 - In a new study, researchers from
Uppsala University demonstrate that elderly men with self-reported sleep
disturbances run a higher risk of developing Alzheimer's disease than
men without self-reported sleep disturbances. The results are published
in the scientific journal Alzheimer's & Dementia.
The researchers followed more than 1,000 men, who
were initially 50 year old, between the years 1970 and 2010. The results
of the study show that self-reported sleep disturbances were linked to
an increased risk for Alzheimer's disease during the 40-year follow-up
period, particularly if they occurred late in life. The data suggest
that a regular good night's sleep could support brain health in men.
"We demonstrate that men with self-reported sleep
disturbances run a 1.5-fold higher risk to develop Alzheimer's disease
than those without reports of sleep disturbances during a 40-year
follow-up period," says Christian Benedict, sleep researcher at Uppsala
University, who led the study.
"The later the self-reported sleep disturbance was
found the higher the risk was for developing Alzheimer's disease. These
findings suggest that strategies aimed at improving sleep quality in
late life may help reduce the risk to develop Alzheimer's disease."
Benedict adds, "Importantly, there are several
lifestyle factors, such as exercise, that can influence your brain's
health. Thus, it must be borne in mind that a multifaceted lifestyle
approach comprising good sleep habits is essential for maintaining brain
health as you age."