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Less than 6 Hours of Sleep Increases the Risk of Dementia

Less than 6 Hours of Sleep Increases the Risk of Dementia

Less than 6 Hours of Sleep Increases the Risk of Dementia

Less than 6 Hours of Sleep Increases the Risk of Dementia. According to research conducted by scientists for 25 years; People who sleep 6 hours or less in middle age are 30% more likely to experience dementia.

The research, which started in 1985, followed 7,959 people for 25 years, starting at the age of 50. Dementia was seen in 521 of the participants in the study.

The study published in Nature Communications on April 20; It found that those in their 50s, 60s, and 70s who slept six hours or less had a 30% higher risk of dementia than those who slept seven hours.


Professor of sleep and physiology at the University of Surrey. Dr. Derk-Jan Dijk said in a statement, “This result from the study is one of the most solid evidence of a link between sleep and dementia.”

Doctors recommend seven to nine hours of sleep each night. Sleep plays a very important role in brain health; It supports learning and memory, helps rebuild synapses and cleanse the brain of toxic products.

Poor sleep pattern harms the body. While it causes a decrease in testosterone in men, it affects the immune system and can increase the risk of cancer.


In previous studies on the subject, people had not been followed for that long. This was a problem in obtaining information about diseases such as dementia that developed over many years.

Dr. Sara Imarisio draws attention to this situation with the following words: “Dementia-causing diseases date back to twenty years before symptoms such as memory loss. Therefore, middle age is a crucial time to investigate risk factors. ”

The New York Times reports that proteins associated with Alzheimer’s, one of the most common types of dementia, accumulate in the brain 15 to 20 years before dementia occurs.


As dementia itself tends to affect sleep, it was not clear whether insomnia caused dementia or vice versa. However, the length of this study raises the possibility that poor sleep is a risk factor for dementia.

One expert told Insider in 2019 that beta-amyloid, a toxic protein linked to Alzheimer’s, appears to accumulate in the brain with poor sleep. In addition, research shows that sleep is important for clearing another Alzheimer’s-linked protein.

The work, which has been going on for 25 years, is part of the research called Whitehall II that has been going on for 28 years.

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