Poor sleep may be linked to Alzheimer’s disease

Amyloid deposits, a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease, appear to be more present in people who have trouble sleeping, reports Medical Daily.

In a recent study, University of Wisconsin, Madison researcher Ruth Benca and her team looked at sleep quality and amyloid levels in 98 healthy patients ages 50 to 73 who participated in the Wisconsin Registry for Alzheimer’s Prevention.

After completing questionnaires about their sleep and related problems, the participants underwent brain scans. Patients who had trouble sleeping were more likely to have amyloid deposits, specifically in the cerebral cortex, which is related to memory, attention, awareness and thought, the article notes.    

Previous studies also have found correlations between lost sleep and reduced brain function. It’s unclear, however, whether sleep problems spur cognitive issues or the other way around, according to the article.

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