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Sleep Apnea Can Increase Alzheimer’s Risk – Study

By Staff

Like the food that you eat, getting a proper sleep is very important. If you have disturbed sleep or if you fail to get a good sleep then it might lead to other serious health problems.

A new study has found that elderly people suffering from obstructive sleep apnea or a sleep disorder characterized by periodic pauses in breathing could be at a higher risk of developing alzheimer's disease.

Alzheimer's disease is a "progressive neuro-degenerative disorder" that destroys memory and other important mental functions, researchers from New York University said.

alzheimer's risk

The researchers reported that more sleep apnoeas lead to a greater accumulation of amino acids in the brain that further enhances the risk of alzheimer's disease over time.

"Several studies have suggested that sleep disturbances might contribute to amino acid deposits and accelerate cognitive decline in those at risk for alzheimer's disease," said Ricardo S. Osorio, Assistant Professor at New York University School of Medicine in the US.

"However, so far it has been challenging to verify causality for these associations because obstructive sleep apnea and alzheimer's disease share risk factors and commonly coexist," Osorio added.

alzheimer's risk

The researchers studied over 208 participants, aged between 55 to 90 years, with normal cognition or the process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through experiences, thoughts, and the senses. None of the participants was referred to be depressed or having any medical condition that might affect their brain function.

The study found that more than half the participants were affected with obstructive sleep apnea along with a rise in the symptoms of sleepiness, cardiovascular, and metabolic dysfunction and brain impairment.

It was noted in the study that the continuous positive airway pressure, dental appliances, positional therapy and other treatments for sleep apnea could delay cognitive impairment and dementia at the same time.

The study was recently published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

So how to prevent sleep apnea? Here are a few of the natural ways to prevent sleep apnea. Take a look.

alzheimer's risk

1. Chamomile:
Chamomile is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. If you are suffering from sleep apnea then having a cup of chamomile tea on a regular basis helps. This has been found by several studies.

alzheimer's risk

2. Lavender:
Take few drops of lavender oil, apply it on your forehead and the temple before going to sleep. Since lavender has anti-inflammatory properties, it provides a soothing effect and induces sleep.

alzheimer's risk

3. Meditation:
Meditation has several health benefits. Several studies conducted across the world have shown that a bit of meditation on a regular basis helps prevent sleep apnea.

alzheimer's risk

4. Weight Loss:
If you are overweight then there are high chances of getting sleep apnea. It is due to the excess body fat that can cause sleep apnea, hence losing weight is essential in order to prevent sleep apnea.

(With Agency Inputs)

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    Read more about: sleep mental
    Story first published: Sunday, November 12, 2017, 20:00 [IST]
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