Sleep disturbances and later cognitive status: a multi-centre study

The goal of this study was to investigate the relationship between sleep disturbances in mid- and late-life with cognitive status in older adults. Three NEAR population-based studies: H70 study, Kungsholmen Project (KP) and the Swedish Panel Study of Living Conditions of the Oldest Old (SWEOLD) were used to investigate this, as well as one Finnish study: Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Aging and Dementia (CAIDE). Late-life cognitive status was measured by the Mini Mental State Exam (MMSE). 

Late-life sleep disturbances and midlife nightmares associated with worse cognitive status
Late-life sleep disturbances (having trouble falling asleep, maintaining sleep and general sleep problems) and midlife nightmares were associated with lower MMSE scores, which suggests that sleep disturbances during different life stages can be associated with worse cognition later in life. The study shows the importance of detecting sleep disturbances as they are modifiable risk factors for later cognitive functioning. 

Photo of Shireen Sindi, first author of the study.

Reference: Sindi S, Johansson L, Skoog J,  Darin Mattsson A, Sjöberg L,  Wang HX, Laura Fratiglioni L,  Kulmala J ,  Soininen H, Solomon A, Johansson B,  Skoog I, Kivipelto M,  Kåreholt I. Sleep disturbances and later cognitive status: a multi-centre study. Sleep Med. 2018;52:26-33. doi: 10.1016/j.sleep.2017.11.1149.