Bad sleep = dementia risk?

NHS attacks misleading headlines from the Sun and Daily Mail

NHS

Don't lose sleep over reports that one bad night can spark dementia

"Just one bad night's sleep 'increases your chances of Alzheimer's'," is the misleading headline in The Sun, which the Mail Online more than matches with the baseless claim that "Just one sleepless night could spark Alzheimer's".

The study that prompted the claim involved only 20 people, none of whom had Alzheimer's disease. They were tracked over the course of just two nights of monitored sleep. During that time they were allowed to sleep as much as they wanted for the first night, and then on the second night they were kept awake by a nurse.

The researchers then used brain scans to measure levels of a protein called beta-amyloid that builds up naturally in the brain. This protein is found in larger amounts in people with Alzheimer's disease, although it is not clear if simply having higher levels of it for a short time increases the risk of Alzheimer's.

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www.mentalhealth.org.uk

How to sleep better

Good sleep doesn’t just mean lots of sleep: it means the right kind of sleep. Sleep affects our ability to use language, sustain attention, understand what we are reading, and summarise what we are hearing; if we compromise on our sleep, we compromise on our performance, our mood, and our interpersonal relationships.

HEAL – The four pillars of good sleep.

There are four main factors that affect the quality of your sleep:

Health

Environment

Attitude

Lifestyle

Sleep has also been shown to protect the immune system. The amount that each person needs is different; however, it is recommended that a healthy adult should sleep, on average, between seven and nine hours a night.

The important thing is that you get good-quality sleep. The following advice can help to HEAL your sleep problems.

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The Sun

Just ONE bad night's sleep 'increases your chances of Alzheimer's

EVEN one night's bad sleep is enough to boost levels of a toxic protein blamed for Alzheimer's, a study claims.

Experts warn getting plenty of shut-eye may be a simple way of slashing chances of developing the brain-wasting disease.

Previous research has hinted at a link between poor slumber and loss of brain power.

Now a trial reveals one night with no sleep significantly raised amounts of dangerous protein, known as beta-amyloid, compared to a good kip.

Scans reveal concentrations were increased by five per cent in parts of the brain most closely implicated with Alzheimer's.

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