Scientists were surprised to discover that there is one glaringly simple sign that you may be destined to get dementia.
Scientists at Boston University Medical Center have just published a groundbreaking new study that claims that there is actually a very simple indicator that someone is heavily at risk of getting dementia 10 years down the road: oversleeping. The study says that people who sleep more than nine hours have twice the risk of getting the degenerative brain condition 10 years down the road compared to those who slept less than that, a vital new insight that could lead to better understanding of dementia and perhaps even advanced treatments.
Scientists surveyed a group of adults in the Framingham Heart Study, observing participants for 10 years and noting how much they claimed to sleep each night. They found a tremendous increased risk of dementia was associated with those who slept more than nine hours per night.
The finding is critical, as it could help scientists spot the early signs of dementia before the condition becomes untreatable.
“Participants without a high school degree who sleep for more than 9 hours each night had six times the risk of developing dementia in 10 years as compared to participants who slept for less. These results suggest that being highly educated may protect against dementia in the presence of long sleep duration,” explained co-corresponding author Sudha Seshadri, MD, professor of neurology at BUSM and FHS senior investigator.
“Self-reported sleep duration may be a useful clinical tool to help predict persons at risk of progressing to clinical dementia within 10 years. Persons reporting long sleep time may warrant assessment and monitoring for problems with thinking and memory,” added co-corresponding author Matthew Pase, PhD, fellow in the department of neurology at BUSM and investigator at the FHS.