The first study comes from the University of Uppsala. The results of study followed patients for 40 years have finally been released recently.
report that elderly men who, later in life, they begin to have difficulty sleeping are significantly more likely to develop Alzheimer’s than men who do not say they have trouble sleeping.
The second study, conducted in Honolulu , concluded that the lower levels of oxygen in the blood during the night caused by conditions such as apnea sleep are associated with harmful brain changes that seem to lead to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Men in the study of Honolulu who had the lowest levels of oxygen in the blood were four times more likely to show detrimental changes in the brain. The results suggest that deep sleep, or “slow-wave sleep,” is necessary to prevent the loss of brain cells. “Slow wave sleep” is that deep stage of sleep, which is also thought to be important in processing memories.
While reseachers are still unsure about the cause of the low oxygen levels, low levels of oxygen in the blood and reduced slow wave sleep seem to contribute to the processes that lead to cognitive decline . More studies are needed, but if you have trouble sleeping, getting treatment may be more important than previously thought.
Gelber one of the researchers, argues that, for people with sleep apnea using a machine of continuous positive pressure airway (CPAP) can improve cognition, even after dementia has developed.
Keith Fargo, director of scientific programs and outreach of the Alzheimer’s Association in Chicago, says that if you have trouble sleeping, getting treatment of sleep may reveal that “Their cognitive problems are not related to dementia at all. ”