Wednesday 20 September 2017

Old folk who love a lie-in at higher risk of dementia

Scientists studying a cohort of over-60s found that those who consistently slept for more than nine hours each night were twice as likely to develop the neurological condition as those who slept for less than nine hours. Photo: PA
Scientists studying a cohort of over-60s found that those who consistently slept for more than nine hours each night were twice as likely to develop the neurological condition as those who slept for less than nine hours. Photo: PA

Henry Bodkin

For many people, the chance to have a lie-in most mornings is one of the luxuries afforded by retirement.

But according to research, it could also be an early warning sign of Alzheimer's.

Scientists studying a cohort of over-60s found that those who consistently slept for more than nine hours each night were twice as likely to develop the neurological condition as those who slept for less than nine hours.

Around 7pc of people aged over 65 develop Alzheimer's or another form of dementia, and the risk is thought to double for every five years that people gain in age.

It is unlikely that people will be able to reduce their risk by getting up earlier, however, as the Boston University researchers behind the study said the inability to get out of bed is probably a symptom, rather than a cause, of the illness.

The research was reported in 'Neurology'.

Irish Independent

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