Too Much Sleep Could Increase Risk of Dementia

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September 17, 2009

Elderly

You always hear about health problems associated with people not getting enough sleep, but what about getting too much sleep? According to a study in the European Journal of Neurology , sleeping nine hours or more every day might increase your risk for dementia. The study, conducted by researchers in Spain, followed 3,286 adults age 65 and over for three years. Participants were screened for dementia and reported their daily sleep duration, which included night-time sleep and daytime napping. Based on the results, participants were broken down into five groups: less than or equal to five hours a night, six hours, seven hours, eight hours and more than or equal to nine hours a night. Over the three years, there were 140 incident cases of dementia. Researchers discovered those who slept nine hours or more were almost twice as likely to develop dementia as those who slept for seven hours, even after adjusting for factors that could affect risk, such as age and smoking and drinking habits.