- 15 min ago What Is Congenital Melanocytic Nevus, A Rare Birthmark? Causes, Symptoms, Complications And Treatments
- 4 hrs ago You Can Be Who You Want To Be: 16-YO School Boy Wears Red Ballgown To Prom, Delighted Twitterati Reacts
- 7 hrs ago Gap Between Second And Precaution Dose Of Covid-19 Vaccine Reduced To 6 Months
- 8 hrs ago Guru Purnima 2022 Trigrahi Yog In Gemini, These Zodiac Signs Will Get Benefits
- Movies TRP Toppers Online: Anupamaa Bags 1st Place; Imlie Witnesses A BIG Jump
- News India elected to UNESCO's Intergovernmental Committee on ICH for 4 years
- Finance 3 Gas Stocks To Buy As Suggested By Sharekhan, Gain Upto Aggressive 57% Return
- Sports India Women vs Sri Lanka Women, 3rd ODI: Harmanpreet, Pooja lead 3-0 series clean sweep
- Technology Xiaomi India 8th Anniversary Sale: Up To 60 Percent Of On Select Xiaomi And Redmi Smartphones
- Automobiles Hyundai Release New Teaser Video Of The Upcoming Tucson SUV
- Education SSC CGL Tier II And Tier III 2022 Dates Announced, Check SSCL CGL Exam 2022 Dates On ssc.nic.in
- Travel Kalahari Desert: Nature's Timeless Masterpieces
There is increasing recognition of the important role sleep plays in our brain health. Growing evidence suggests disturbed sleep may increase the risk of developing dementia.
I (Camilla Hoyos, Research Fellow, University of Sydney) and University of Sydney colleagues have published a new study showing treating sleep apnoea in older adults with mild cognitive impairment can improve memory, but not other areas of cognition, in the short term.
As there is no current treatment or cure for dementia, increasing efforts have focused on developing novel approaches to slow its progression. Mild cognitive impairment is the stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal ageing and the more serious decline of dementia.
In mild cognitive impairment, the individual, family and friends notice cognitive changes, but the individual can still successfully carry out everyday activities. Mild cognitive impairment is associated with an increased risk of developing dementia in subsequent years.
Researchers believe this is the optimal time to intervene to help prevent a future dementia diagnosis. Finding new ways to slow cognitive decline in those with mild cognitive impairment is therefore important.
How Is Sleep Important For Our Brain Health?
Sleep optimises the ability of our brains to stabilise and consolidate newly learned information and memories. These processes can occur across all the different stages of sleep, with deep sleep (also known as stage 3 or restorative sleep) playing a key role.
We also now know the glymphatic system, or the waste management system of the brain, is highly active during sleep, especially during deep sleep. This process allows waste products, including toxins, our brain has built up during the day to be cleaned out.
Toxins in the brain include beta-amyloid, one of the key proteins in the development of Alzheimer's disease. Disturbing sleep could disrupt this cleaning process and lead to more accumulation of beta-amyloid in the brain.
The important role of sleep in these vital processes has led to the investigation of whether sleep disruption, including sleep disorders, could be associated with changes in our cognition when we age, and a possible link to the development of dementia.
What is sleep apnoea?Sleep apnoea is estimated to affect 1 billion people worldwide. In Australia, 5-10% of adults are diagnosed with the condition. Sleep apnoea causes the throat (also called the upper airway) to close either completely (an apnoea) or partially (a hypopnoea) during sleep.
These closures or obstructions can range from ten seconds up to one minute and can lead to a drop in blood oxygen levels. To start breathing again, a short awakening occurs without the individual being aware.
In a person living with severe sleep apnoea this process can happen 30 times or more an hour, causing very fragmented sleep. People with sleep apnoea may snore, toss and turn, and others may notice them stopping breathing, choking or gasping for air during sleep.
These repeated disruptions to sleep can cause sleepiness and reduce alertness during the day which, for some people, leads to difficulties performing tasks.
Does Sleep Apnoea Increase Our Risk Of Dementia?
The sleep fragmentation, as well as the drops in blood oxygen at night time, are a double blow in dementia risk. Studies have shown sleep apnoea to be associated with a 26% increase in the development of cognitive impairment, as well as greater amounts of beta-amyloid in the brain.
However, it is not clear if treating sleep apnoea could reduce this risk.
The gold-standard treatment for sleep apnoea is continuous positive airway pressure therapy, commonly known as CPAP, in which a mask connected to a pump blows continuous air down the upper airway, keeping it open.
When the machine is being used it stops the airway from closing. It is not known whether treating sleep apnoea will reduce the risk of dementia. Our new research, however, shows CPAP could be beneficial for memory in the short term.
Our study aimed to understand whether treating older adults with both sleep apnoea and mild cognitive impairment could improve thinking and memory skills in the short term.
The trial assessed the effect of CPAP treatment on memory and thinking skills compared to no treatment. This was a crossover study, which means all participants had both CPAP and no treatment during the trial, but at different times. Some had CPAP first, then swapped.
The others had no treatment first, then swapped.
Trained staff helped participants get established with the therapy, and after using it for three months, participants underwent a series of cognitive tests.
The researchers found that compared to not treating sleep apnoea, thinking skills were not improved with CPAP, whereas some improvements in memory were observed. This suggests treating sleep apnoea could potentially improve outcomes in the short term, but it is unknown whether it would have any impact on long-term cognitive decline.
A previous study suggested CPAP could slow cognitive changes over one year in older adults with mild cognitive impairment and sleep apnoea. However, studies of longer duration are needed before we can say what the long-term effects look like.
(The Conversation, by Camilla Hoyos, Research Fellow, University of Sydney)
- wellnessDiarrhoea Outbreak: Public Health Emergency Declared In Karaikal, Schools And Colleges Shut For Three Days
- wellnessKerala's Athirappilly Forest Region Reports Outbreak Of Anthrax
- wellnessCovid-19 Vaccine Protects People Of All Sizes: Lancet Study
- wellness'Heal In India': An Indian Govt Initiative To Attract More Foreign Patients
- wellnessCovid Patients At Higher Risk Of Serious Neurodegenerative Disorders: Study
- wellness11 Health Symptoms Women Shouldn't Ignore
- yoga spiritualityInternational Yoga Day 2022 Highlights: Yoga Is A Way Of Life, Says PM Narendra Modi
- wellnessHow Does The Body Convert Carbohydrates Into Energy?
- wellnessAntibiotics Can Lead To Life-Threatening Fungal Infection Because Of Disruption To The Gut Microbiome: Expert
- healthPhilanthropist Upasana Kamineni Konidela Visits Senior Care Homes And Health Camps
- wellnessIs Nutraceuticals A Smart Choice For A Healthier Tomorrow?
- wellnessE-manas Platform For Mental Health Can Be Replicated Nationwide: K'taka Health Minister