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Deep Sleep May Act as Fountain of Youth in Old Age

– Posted in: Commentary

UC Berkley researchers studied the need for sleep in older adults who often begin to experience wakefulness or need to wake during the night to use the restroom. Due to the nighttime disturbances older adults may experience, they also have their deep sleep disrupted. The lack of deep sleep can have adverse cosmetic affects like greying or wrinkles. Additionally, it is also linked to diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and Alzheimers. The aging brain has trouble reaching the deep sleep stage and has reduced ability to regulate the neuro-chemicals that stabilize sleep. There are a variety of treatments available such as prescriptions and non-pharmaceutical options like acoustic tones that can aid in reaching a deep sleep state.

Key Takeaways:

  • Scientists found that lack of deep sleep leads to cognitive decline and mental and physical disorders.
  • As people get older many experience sleep interruptions and lack the deep sleep needed to stay healthy.
  • Pharmaceutical intervention commonly used to treat insomniacs is sedative sleep but not deep sleep. Scientists are exploring non-pharmaceutical interventions to boost deep sleep.

“Another deficiency in later life is the inability to regulate neurochemicals that stabilize our sleep and help us transition from sleep to waking states.”

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