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Low sleep quality linked to brain deterioration

Low quality sleep linked to physical loss of grey matter.
Low quality sleep linked to physical loss of grey matter.

A new study of 144 Gulf War vets has shown that poor sleep quality reduced the volume of grey matter in the brain. This especially applies to the brain’s frontal lobe, an area that plays a role in many processes including memory and occupational functions.

According to American Academy of Sleep Medicine President, Dr. M. Safwan Badr, "This study emphasizes the importance of seeking medical help if you are troubled by the poor quality of your sleep. A board certified sleep medicine physician can identify the cause of your sleep problem and develop an effective treatment plan for you."

The degree of sleep quality in participants was determined with the use of the Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index, while the measurement of grey matter in this study was done with the use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Although the results of the study were not able to pinpoint an exact relationship between amount of brain matter lost and nights of low quality sleep, it did confirm that there is enough of a correlation to justify further research.

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