According to a new study, people with irregular sleep patterns could have a higher risk of dementia than those with regular sleep patterns. This article examines this claim on the connection between sleep patterns and dementia.
How Was The Study Conducted?
For the study, researchers made 88,094 participants, with an average of 62 wearing a wrist device that measured their sleep cycle for seven days. The device’s data was used to calculate sleep regularity and the possibility of a person being in the same sleep state at any two points, 24 hours apart.
Participants were rated based on sleep regularity using a scale of 0 to 100. For instance, those who slept and woke up at the same time daily received a score of 100. Alternatively, individuals who went to sleep and woke up at different times daily received a score of 0.
Those in the lowest 5% had an average score of 41, while those in the highest 5% had an average score of 71. According to the researchers, participants with irregular sleep patterns were 53% more likely to develop dementia than those with more regular patterns.
Changing Your Sleep Patterns
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most adults should sleep for seven or more hours per night. The National Institutes of Health also provides suggestions for changing your sleep patterns:
● Go to bed and wake up at the same time daily.
● Use the hour before bed for quiet time
● Avoid caffeine and nicotine at night
● Avoid large meals within a few hours of bedtime
● Create a soothing, quiet, dark area to sleep
● Find relaxing activities to do before bedtime, such as bathing or reading.
Other Health Problems Connected to Irregular Sleep Patterns
In the past several years, scientists have linked irregular sleep patterns to various health issues:
● In 2021, a study conducted at the University of Michigan’s academic center discovered that getting less hours of sleep or staying up late most nights is associated with bad moods and depression.
● A 2023 study published in the journal Hypertension revealed that individuals who slept and woke up at different times were more likely to have high blood pressure.
● Another 2023 study by the American Heart Association noted that adults 45 and older who slept at different times each night and slept an inconsistent number of hours were more likely to develop atherosclerosis.
A new study shows that irregular sleep increases your dementia risk. You must consult your doctor on treatment options to help you sleep better and a checkup to determine if there are any underlying conditions.