Snoring and Dementia, A Real Concern

sleep apneaSleep is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle – and good brain health and sleep go hand-in-hand. Every night, your body goes through the rigorous process of replenishing your memory banks and detoxifying harmful proteins. However, individuals are unaware of how harmful snoring – a common respiratory condition – can ultimately be to their brains.

According to new research published in the journal Neurology, snoring can cause an interruption in sleep for a few seconds to several minutes and has a direct impact on memory and recall. In fact, an estimated 45 percent of adults suffer from snoring and, for 25 percent of American’s, it’s an everyday nuisance.

The study, helmed by Dr. Ricardo Osorio, a professor of psychiatry at NYU Center for Brain Health, looked at 2000 people. Ranging in age from 55 to 75 years old, they rated their snoring habits, for 6 months, and took note of any changes in daily cognitive function.

Individuals experiencing sleep apnea and habitual snoring were more likely to exhibit signs of mild cognitive impairment, on average 12 years earlier than the healthy sleeper group. Oftentimes, mild cognitive impairment precedes dementia.

In theory, a shortness of breath during snoring is what causes a deprivation of oxygen to the brain, a critical factor that has been linked to reduced neuron activity and damage.

In Alzheimer’s disease, amyloids, the plaque like substance that builds up in the brain, is typically least active at night. However, due to the body never reaching a sustainable level of deep sleep, amyloid production increases, therefore causing even more memory problems.

Healthy air flow is critical for a good night’s rest and healthy memory response. Non-invasive techniques include a healthy diet, sleeping on your side, normalizing weight, avoiding alcohol, and skipping any large, late meals that are considered too close to bedtime.

In the case these tips don’t produce results, an ARES Sleep Test may very well be the next step. Home sleep tests such as ARES include a device that can monitor sleeping patterns and is as effective as an in-lab sleep study – giving the patient total control over their sleep cycle.

This test is offered at The Salerno Center and, along with natural supplements for sleep, provides a comprehensive treatment plan with zero side effects.

Along with the ARES Sleep test and the right combination of lifestyle choices, individuals can better avoid developing mild cognitive impairment and improve their chances of living disease-free.

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