New research in the United States has shown that seniors who feel overly tired during the day could be at a higher risk of developing conditions such as diabetes, cancer, and high blood pressure.
Senior Sleepiness Risks
The new preliminary study, carried out by researchers at Stanford University, recruited 10,930 participants- 34% of whom were 65 years of age or older. They were interviewed about their hyper somnolence symptoms, also known as severe daytime sleepiness.
They questioned the participants on two days, three years apart. 23% of people above the age of 65 met the criterion for extreme sleepiness, even after seven or more hours of sleep a night. 24% recorded extreme sleepiness in the second survey, and 41% of these participants claimed feeling overly sleepy was a persistent issue for them.
At the 72nd Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology they found that participants who reported sleepiness in the first phone interview had a 2.3-fold greater chance of developing diabetes or elevated blood pressure three years later and twice as likely to develop cancer than those who did not mention experiencing sleepiness.
People who reported sleepiness in the second, but not the first interview were 50% more likely to have musculoskeletal system and connective tissue disorders, such as inflammation, tendinitis and lupus. Those who reported daytime sleepiness during all interviews were 2.5 times more likely to have cardiac disease.
The findings remained true even after the team took into account other factors , such as gender and sleep apnea, that can affect daytime sleepiness. Not only can daytime sleepiness decline in itself, impacting a person’s capacity to handle everyday activities, but the researchers also suggest it may signify a increased likelihood of certain more dangerous disorders.
It could help doctors predict and prevent future medical conditions by paying attention to sleepiness in older adults. Older people and their family members will want to investigate sleeping patterns more carefully to consider the possible danger of having a more severe medical condition.
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