Does Snoring Increase Dementia Risk?

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Posted: April 20, 2015

Patients with sleep apnea often experience cognitive problems. However, if a bed partner has complained about your snoring, these issues might be a sign that you’re at greater risk for a serious neurological disorder.

A recent study at NYU found that patients with a sleep disorder tend to develop mild cognitive impairment more than a decade earlier than those who don’t suffer from chronic snoring, sleep apnea, or another condition that affects breathing during sleep. TIME Magazine reports that the researchers also found a connection between apnea-related snoring and dementia stemming from Alzheimer’s disease, though the link wasn’t as strong.
Mild cognitive impairment is a risk factor for dementia. Symptoms might include:
  • Forgetfulness
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Changes in mood
  • Trouble with decision making and planning
  • Impulsiveness
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
Patients with sleep apnea may also experience cognitive difficulties and emotional and behavioral issues. If you snore, it’s important to take the problem seriously and seek early intervention for sleep apnea.
According to TIME, patients who underwent CPAP treatment for snoring experienced a reduction in their risk for mild cognitive impairment and dementia, though adherence rates were (predictably) low. Thankfully, alternative treatments for snoring and sleep apnea are available to help patients breathe normally during sleep without having to wear an uncomfortable CPAP mask.
For more information about snoring treatment, please call 1 (866) 727-6275 (1-8-NO-PAP-MASK) to speak to a local specialist.