A new study links excessive napping to dementia

A New Study Links Over Napping and Dementia.We all love to squeeze in a good nap every here and there. .However, a new study suggests that over napping is a sign of dementia.During a 14 year study for adults ages 74-88 - those that napped excessively showed signs of early dementia. .The study links the brain and sleep patters to increased memory loss and more.Experts don't want you to stop napping, instead they want you to monitor and modify your naps. .Instead of an hour, nap for 15 to 20 minutes a day. .Power naps are known to help boost mood, restore alertness, decrease stress and more.

We all love a good nap — when we can find the time to squeeze one in. But according to a new study, excessive napping can be a warning sign of dementia for older adults.

The Alzheimer’s and Dementia Association conducted a14-year study with more than 1,400 subjects between the ages of 74 and 88. In a recent follow-up, they discovered that elderly adults who napped more than an hour once a day or more were 40% more likely to develop Alzheimer’s as opposed to those who didn’t.

Alzheimer’s is a brain disease that destroys memory and other mental functions. Oftentimes, Alzheimer’s impacts sleep patterns — causing those affected to stay awake during the night. This lack of sleep leads to overcompensating by napping frequently, which can further disrupt sleep patterns and harm brain function, according to the National Institute of Health.

Participants in the study wore a tracker for two weeks each year, during the 14-year study. The trackers monitored their movements from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Since some downtime could be explained by watching television or reading a book, the technology used to determine the difference between the two was important.

“We have developed a unique algorithm to define naps and to differentiate naps from no activity. We didn’t define a specific length for ‘extended nap’ but we were more focused on the accumulated nap minutes per day and the change in the length of naps over the years.” Dr. Yue Leng, assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, told CNN.

Experts don’t want you to stop napping altogether; instead, they want you to monitor and modify your napping patterns. Try limiting daytime naps to 15 to 20 minutes, and avoid napping after 3 p.m. to help prevent sleepless nights.

And remember that some napping can be beneficial. Studies have shown that we tend to get tired roughly eight hours after we wake up. Taking a nap for 20 minutes or less has tremendous benefits like restoring alertness, decreasing stress and increased motor performance, according to WebMd.