Sleeping Longer: Trading IQ for Zzz’s?

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    We’ve all learned that getting 7-8 hours of sleep every night is a good idea, but is this always the case? It has long been established that a lack of sleep may contribute to cognitive impairment; however, new research suggests that you can also receive too much sleep.

    This begs the issue of how much rest you require on a constant basis for a healthy cognitive compensatory mechanism, and how much sleep is too much.

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    The study’s investigators sought to discover how much sleep was related to cognitive decline over time. They examined 100 older persons, on average in their mid-to-late 70s, and followed them for four to five years to do this. 88 participants did not have dementia at the time of their research, whereas 12 had cognitive deficits (one with mild dementia and 11 with the pre-dementia stage of mild cognitive impairment). Participants were invited to take a battery of routine cognitive and neuropsychiatric tests throughout the research to check for evidence of cognitive decline or dementia. The results of these tests were then merged to provide a single score known as the Preclinical Alzheimer’s Cognitive Composite (PACC). The higher the score, the more improved their cognition with time.

    Sleep was recorded using single-electrode encephalography (EEG) equipment worn on the participant’s forehead while napping for four to six nights. This was done only once, three years after participants started doing their yearly cognitive exams. This EEG enabled the researchers to precisely monitor brain activity, revealing whether or not someone was sleeping (and for how long), as well as how peaceful that nap was.

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    How to manage good sleep?

    We may not always be able to regulate the hours of rest we receive on any nightly basis, but we can improve our pattern and the surroundings in which we relax in order to achieve higher adequate sleep.

    1. Tuning your body can help you enhance your slumber quality and get a good night’s sleep on a regular basis. You’re more likely to get a good night’s sleep and wake up ready to face the day if you’re flexible and listen to your body when it’s time to nap.
    2. Before bed, try winding down. You may simply allow your body to achieve a state of rejuvenation before you even shut your eyes by setting a nightly ritual to wind down before going to bed, without your phone, and perhaps with a skincare program and some herbal tea.
    3. Reading a decent novel for 15 minutes every day has been proven to improve cognitive abilities, and when coupled with your nighttime ritual before bed, you may disconnect from your internal thoughts and sleep comfortably.
    4. Keep a notebook at your bedside. Tension or crucial thoughts that occur to us while we wind down or even rest might have a negative influence on our quality of sleep. By having a notepad by your bedside, you may write down your worries or thoughts and return to them after you’ve rested in the morning.
    5. Making a soothing bedroom. By not working in your bed, you are also teaching your brain to encourage relaxation while you are attempting to rest and go sleep. Make your bedroom a sanctuary, and your nap quality will undoubtedly increase!
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