Prolonged Sleep May Be Early Warning Sign of Dementia
Older adults who started sleeping more than nine hours a night — but had not previously slept so much — were at more than double the risk of developing dementia a decade later than those who slept nine hours or less, researchers report.
The increased risk was not seen in people who had always slept more than nine hours.
“We’re not suggesting you go wake up Grandpa. We think this might be a marker for the risk of dementia, not a cause” of the illness, said Dr. Sudha Seshadri, a professor of neurology at Boston University School of Medicine and the senior author of the study, in Neurology.
“我们并不是建议老爷爷早起。我们觉得这也许是痴呆症风险的一个标志，而不是病因，”波士顿大学医学院(Boston University School of Medicine)神经学教授、发表在《神经学》(Neurology)上的这篇论文的第一作者苏达·塞沙德里(Sudha Seshadri)说。
Using data from 2,457 people, average age 72, who were part of a study in Framingham, Mass., the researchers found that those with a new habit of excessive slumber were at a greater risk of all forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s, which is characterized by a buildup of beta amyloid, a toxic protein fragment that forms plaques in the brain.
“My suspicion is that this is a compensatory mechanism: that at a time when amyloid is building up in the brain, people may be sleeping longer as the body is reacting and trying to remove it from the brain,” Dr. Seshadri added, cautioning that is only a hypothesis.