$20 off your first month Access Dr. Jess personally curated holistic medicine guides and protocols.
JOIN NOW

Article

10 Ways that Sleep Apnea Can Disturb Memory, Cognition, and Focus

Monday, June 26th 2023 10:00am 4 min read
Dr. Jessica Peatross dr.jess.md @drjessmd

Hospitalist & top functional MD who gets to the root cause. Stealth infection & environmental toxicity keynote speaker.

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep. This can cause a decrease in the amount of oxygen that reaches the brain, leading to a number of negative health outcomes. Sleep apnea has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Additionally, sleep apnea can impair memory, cognition, and focus in a number of ways.

Decreased oxygen flow: One way that sleep apnea can impair memory, cognition, and focus is by causing a decrease in oxygen flow to the brain. This reduction in oxygen flow can cause damage to brain cells and affect memory and cognitive abilities. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that individuals with sleep apnea had a reduction in cerebral blood flow and oxygen saturation during sleep. Additionally, sleep apnea can cause a decrease in the amount of oxygen that reaches the hippocampus, a brain region that is critical for memory consolidation.

Fragmented sleep: Sleep apnea can cause interruptions in sleep due to pauses in breathing, leading to fragmented sleep. This can impair memory consolidation and affect cognitive function. A study published in the journal Sleep found that individuals with sleep apnea had lower scores on tests of attention and executive function compared to individuals without sleep apnea. Additionally, sleep fragmentation has been linked to a decrease in gray matter volume in the brain, which can affect cognitive abilities and memory.

Insufficient sleep: Sleep apnea can cause individuals to wake up feeling tired and unrested, resulting in insufficient sleep. This can impair cognitive function, memory, and focus. A study published in the journal Sleep Medicine found that individuals with sleep apnea had shorter total sleep time, longer sleep onset latency, and increased wake after sleep onset compared to individuals without sleep apnea.

Disrupted sleep architecture: Sleep apnea can disrupt the natural sleep architecture, leading to impaired memory consolidation and affecting cognitive abilities. A study published in the journal SLEEP found that sleep apnea was associated with a decrease in the proportion of time spent in deep sleep, a stage of sleep important for memory consolidation.

Members Only Content

To continue reading please subscribe to WellnessPlus by Dr. Jess MD

Be your own best doctor with our comprehensive suite of online health coaching tools.

Copyright 2024 WellnessPlus by Dr. Jess MD. All rights reserved

$20 off your first month

Access Dr. Jess personally curated holistic medicine guides and protocols.

JOIN NOW