According to a new study published in the journal JAMA Neurology, the length of adult’s sleep schedules could affect their brain health. Disrupted sleep is a common phenomenon late in life and is associated with changes in cognitive function. This is the mental capacity for learning, reasoning, decision-making, remembering and paying attention. Age-related changes in sleep have also had connections to depression and Alzheimer’s disease.
Those in the study who reported short sleep duration (6 hours or less) had elevated levels of beta amyloid, which increases risk of dementia. That was in comparison to participants who slept seven to eight hours per night, considered to be the normal sleep duration. Older adults with inadequate sleep also performed moderately to worse on tests used on older adults to assess cognition, orientation, attention, language and memory. Sleeping too much, on the other hand, was associated with lesser executive function and even higher body mass index. The moral of the story: find your sleep sweet spot no matter how busy you get!
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